To catch a predator

Mother of victim shares story that lead to arrest

By Melanie Yingst -

TROY — Just from the worried and anxious look on her 14-year-old daughter’s face, she knew something was wrong.

The mother of the teen victim spoke to the media after Allen E. Smith, 69, of West Milton, was sentenced to two years in prison on Monday.

“He picked the wrong one, yet he picked the right one,” the mother said following Smith’s sentencing. “We were home and she came out of the bedroom and she had this look on her face.”

When she asked her daughter what was wrong, her daughter shared that someone was texting her and that the conversation had “taken a turn.”

She said she took her daughter’s phone and communicated with the person contacting her daughter before turning the phone in to Troy Police Department detectives.

“When the conversation turned sexual, I went straight to the police,” she shared.

A few weeks later, instead of meeting up with the young girl, Troy Police arrested Smith at Menke Park in Troy. Smith had brought pornography and several sexually oriented items with him to meet the girl before authorities intercepted him last September.

“My daughter doesn’t understand how many girls she saved by doing this,” the mother said. “This is going to have long-term effects on her, but I’m thankful — it’s evident he was in counseling before and it failed — but there will be no other victims.”

According to reports, Smith solicited photos and other information from young teens as young as 11 or 12 through a variety of social media apps including KiK, which was the application Smith used to “chat” with the Troy victim.

According to law enforcement authorities, Smith has as many as 150 “chats” open at the time of his arrest.

“If there any other kids in situations like this in social media, Snapchat, KiK, Twitter — they need to make sure that they know who they are talking to,” she said. “I just would encourage any kids out there to be open with their parents if anything doesn’t seem right or seems out of place — go to someone. … Go to a teacher or someone that they trust, they don’t have to fall victim.”

For more information about how to talk to your child about Internet and social media safety, visit

Mother of victim shares story that lead to arrest

By Melanie Yingst

Reach Melanie Yingst at or follow her on Twitter @Troydailynews

Reach Melanie Yingst at or follow her on Twitter @Troydailynews