HIV-positive man from Maryland, charged with knowingly transferring viruses to four women who he targeted on dating apps
- Rudolph Jericho Smith, 34, of Frederick, was arrested and charged on Monday
- The police received a tip from a woman who said she was tested positive for HIV after sleeping with Smith in 2017 and has since tracked down three other alleged victims
- According to police, he discovered his HIV status in 2014 and used apps to mislead women
Rudolph Smith (photo) has been accused of knowingly transferring HIV to women he has met on dating apps
An HIV-positive man from Maryland was deliberately transferring the virus to women he had targeted dating apps, police said.
Rudolph Jericho Smith, of Frederik, was arrested on Monday and charged with a 21-month investigation.
The Frederick police received a tip in July 2017 that 34-year-old Smith was looking at women on various apps and websites and had sexual relationships with them, fully aware of his diagnosis.
The complaint came from a woman who said she was tested positive for HIV after sex with Smith, reported Frederick News-Post.
The police have so far identified and contacted three more alleged victims, who met Smith on Backpage and Bumble, as well as offline.
Smith was indicted this week by a grand jury from Frederick County on four points, each with a first-degree attack, recklessly endangering and knowingly transferring HIV to another person.
Although the indictment has been filed there before, the prosecutor Charlie Smith of the state of Frederick County said it is highly unusual.
& # 39; It is only every few years that we will see a case like this, & # 39; Charlie Smith said to the news post.
The evidence to secure Rudolph Smith's arrest has taken considerable efforts to, due to the highly sensitive nature of the case and the difficulty of finding victims through numerous dating sites.
Frederick Police has identified four victims who have met Smith dating websites, including Bumble (photo), and also offline
Detectives also had to submit requests for medical records to confirm their timeline and victims' statements, Lt Kirk Henneberry, who supervised the investigation, told Frederick News-Post.
To obtain a conviction, prosecutors must provide irrefutable and watertight evidence that the suspect knew they were HIV positive.
Smith received his diagnosis in 2014 and he later confirmed his HIV status to detectives, reported Frederick News-Post with reference to a press release from the state attorney's office in Frederick County.
Deliberately transferring or trying to transfer HIV to another person carries a $ 2500 fine and up to three years in prison.
The police asked anyone who may have had a sexual relationship with Smith around or after July 2017 for other potential victims to come forward.