Jacksonville, Florida – A federal jury has found Darryl Gray Smith, Jr. (30, Orange Park) guilty of two counts of attempted online enticement of a child to engage in sexual activity, and one count of online solicitation of child pornography. Smith faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years, and up to life, in federal prison for each of the attempted online enticement counts. For the solicitation charge, he faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years, and up to 30 years. A sentencing date has not yet been set.
According to testimony and evidence introduced during the trial, from February 6 through February 13, 2019, Smith engaged in a series of online text conversations with a person whom he believed to be a 14-year-old child. Unbeknownst to Smith, the “child” was an undercover Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agent. During the course of the online conversations, Smith discussed in detail his desire to have sex with and to perform sexual acts on the child. Smith made several requests for the child to send him images of the child engaging in sexually explicit conduct. On February 13, 2019, Smith went to a local fast food restaurant in Orange Park to meet the child, and was subsequently arrested by HSI agents and deputies from the Clay County Sheriff’s Office.
This case was investigated by the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Ashley Washington and Kelly Karase.
This is another case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.