School Resource Officer Federally Charged In Connection With Allegedly ‘Sexting’ Teen


UPDATED: Friday July 27, 2012 6:27 PM

A school resource officer working at a Columbus high school is in FBI custody after being accused of inappropriately contacting a teenage girl, according to 10TV News sources on Friday.

Officer Todd L. Smith served as a school resource officer at Centennial High School during the 2011-12 school year. He has served with the Columbus Division of Police since 1985.

A source told 10TV News that Smith, 49, is accused of “sexting” a teenage girl, who was a student at the high school.

Smith was arrested by FBI agents on Thursday and federally charged. He was being held in the custody of U.S. Marshals.

Court records regarding the issue were sealed.

10TV News obtained Smith’s personnel file and found that it was not his first time he was accused of inappropriate actions.

In 1992, Smith was suspended for 30 days for misconduct, accused of making sexually suggestive remarks to two women while working an off-duty security jobs.

Smith also was accused of coercing one of the women to kiss him and then lie about the incident to his supervisor. Smith was ordered to get counseling.

According to the Columbus City Schools, Smith has no previous complaints.

Zack Bailey, a Centennial High School graduate, said that the allegations spread quickly.

“Facebook’s been blowing up,” Bailey said. “I’ve had a few friends text me like, ‘Hey dude. Did you hear?’ ‘Yeah, I’ve heard.’”

Bailey said that he could not believe what he was hearing. He had nothing but kind words to say about Smith.

“Really charismatic outgoing guy, whose always friend, always has a smile,” Bailey said. “You talk to him, ‘Hey Officer Smith, how’s it going?’”

Bailey said that it was a lot to process.

“I always saw him as kind of a great guy,” Bailey said.

Columbus police said that Smith was relieved of duty. His badge and gun were taken.

If and when Smith is allowed to return to work, he would be put on desk duty pending the outcome of a criminal and internal investigation, a spokesperson for the Columbus Division of Police said.

Local Fraternal Order of Police President Jim Gilbert said that the FOP would not represent Smith at a hearing, scheduled for Monday afternoon, because it was a criminal investigation.

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