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Kilgore man gets 35 years in child sex case

By Sarah Thomas
July 30, 2013 at 10 p.m.

A Kilgore man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for his role in the sexual assault of a child who, prosecutors say, was younger than three years old at the time of the offense.

Jesse Dale Smith, 33, of Kilgore was sentenced Thursday in the 124th District Court on one count of aggravated sexual assault of a child and one count of possession and promotion of child pornography. He is not eligible for parole.

The charges stem from a September 2012 arrest at Smith's home in the 400 block of PR 3526 in Kilgore after Gregg County deputies followed up on a Child Protective Services report, according to his arrest affidavit.

Smith told officers he had child pornography on his cell phone and gave officers consent to search the phone at the time of his arrest, according to an offense report from the Gregg County Sheriff's Office.

During searches of Smith's phone and home, police said they found images of child pornography on his cell phone and images of children ages two to 17 years old engaging in various sexual acts with adults and minors, including pictures of Smith molesting a two-year-old child, according to the offense report.

Smith later told officers he used his phone to download more than 100 pornographic images of children, the offense stated.

The report also states Smith confessed to abusing the child.

Two others were indicted in connection to the sexual assault of the same child.

Peggy Weinberg, 27, of Athens and Cassandra Stone, 32, of Kilgore remain in the Gregg County Jail.

The indictment filed in the 124th District Court states Weinberg aided Smith and was present when the child was assaulted.

Court records also show Smith and Stone were indicted in December on charges they sexually abused the same child.

Weinberg is being held on a $250,000 bond on charges of aggravated sexual assault of a child and inducing or authorizing a sexual performance by a child.

Stone remains in the Gregg County Jail on $250,000 on a charge of aggravated sexual assault of a child.

No trial date has been set for either of the women.



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