Published Tuesday, May 28, 2013 | 4 p.m.
Updated Tuesday, May 28, 2013 | 6:45 p.m.
2200 block of Linn Lane
A man convicted of three sex offenses involving juveniles was arrested Saturday after officers found a child in his residence, Metro Police said.
The arrest of William O. Smith, 41, has prompted officers to search for other possible victims.
Smith’s arrest happened after officers went to his residence in the 2200 block of Linn Lane, near East Lake Mead Boulevard and North Nellis Boulevard, to investigate a report of a missing boy, police said.
The juvenile’s mother told officers her son had been hanging around Smith, said Lt. Dan McGrath, of Metro’s sexual assault detail. When detectives realized Smith was a registered sex offender, they went to his residence and discovered another child there, McGrath said.
The missing boy was later found at an unrelated location but also is believed to be one of Smith’s victims, McGrath said.
Detectives arrested Smith on three counts of lewdness with a child under 14, two counts of child abuse with substantial bodily or mental harm and five counts of luring a child with mental illness, in addition to single counts of open and gross lewdness, possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and burglary, police said.
Smith, who also goes by Heath Robert Grabe, served time in a Nevada prison after being convicted of an attempted sexual assault in Reno in 2005, according to records on Metro’s sex offender registry. Smith’s criminal record also includes two convictions in North Carolina for sex offenses involving juveniles.
“He’s a serial child molester,” McGrath said. “There’s no other way to say it.”
Police said Smith moved to Las Vegas in January 2011 after being released from prison. So far, it appears he complied with Nevada law and routinely registered as a sex offender, McGrath said.
But detectives allege Smith befriended nearby families and then lured young boys to his residence. Smith moved several times in the past two years, leading detectives to suspect he could have preyed on other children, McGrath said.
“He bought the kids gifts,” McGrath said, describing Smith’s alleged method of operation. “He took them to McDonald’s. He took them to the movies.”
Smith lived in different parts of the Las Vegas Valley, including downtown at one point, McGrath said.
Smith is in custody at the Clark County Detention Center, where his bail is listed as $1.1 million. A court hearing is scheduled for Wednesday morning.
The investigation is ongoing. Detectives ask anyone who has concerns about a child’s relationship with Smith — or anyone who has any information related to the case — to call Metro’s sexual assault section at 702-828-3421.