Woman in custody after alleged sex assault

Posted Dec. 08, 2009, at 3:22 p.m.
Laura Smith. Here's a second photo of Laura Smith, on left in stripes. Please wait to use until confirmed. Nit Ricker story.
Laura Smith. Here's a second photo of Laura Smith, on left in stripes. Please wait to use until confirmed. Nit Ricker story.

BANGOR, Maine — A woman who reportedly sexually assaulted a local man and burned his body so badly on Nov. 29 that he was still in the hospital as of Tuesday turned herself in to police Tuesday afternoon, Bangor police Sgt. Paul Edwards said.

Laura M. Smith, 27, formerly of 24 First St., was wanted in connection with the felony assault of the 43-year-old victim.

“She surrendered about 10 to 15 minutes ago at the police station,” said Edwards just before 5 p.m. Tuesday. “She had an idea we were on to her.”

Smith was charged with two felonies — elevated aggravated assault, a Class A crime, and gross sexual assault, a Class B crime.

The incident in question was reported at 8:40 a.m. Nov. 29 when police received a 911 call from the injured victim, who lives on First Street.

“The male victim was found to have extensive burns on his back and was transported to EMMC by Bangor Fire,” Edwards said. “The victim remains in the Eastern Maine Medical Center with serious injuries.”

After investigating the incident, an arrest warrant was issued for Smith, but she was gone from her apartment when police arrived to arrest her, he said.

“She pretty much packed her stuff and left,” Edwards said. “What little she had was gone.”

Until she turned herself in, police had no clue where she was, he said.

Police are releasing few other details about the crime, including how the man was sexually assaulted or how he was burned.

“We’re treating this like we would a homicide,” Edwards said. Those details will come out in the police affidavit, which will become public once it is filed in court.

Smith is expected to be in court today or Thursday.

Smith has no prior arrests listed, Sgt. Chip Hodges said.

Edwards added, “She’s kind of new here.”

Bangor police sent out a press release earlier Tuesday saying they were looking for Smith, and it appears she got the message and decided to turn herself in, Edwards said.

She is described as a 5-foot-7-inch-tall, 118-pound white woman with reddish hair and hazel eyes.

If convicted of the Class A elevated aggravated assault, Smith faces up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

nricker@bangordailynews.net

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