BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – Hamlet Smith, the owner of the local counseling centers Life Strategies, was arrested earlier this week on charges of sexual abuse.
According to the criminal complaint, the alleged incident happened at the Beckley office on October 22nd.
Smith had a scheduled meeting at his practice in Beckley with an adult female who was not an employee or a patient. The female alleges that Smith asked for a hug as she was leaving and that’s when she said Smith allegedly forced his hand down the front of her shirt in an apparent move to touch her breast.
The accuser proceeded to tell Smith that: “This is not going to happen.” When Smith reportedly asked why, she responded that she had a boyfriend. According to the complaint, Smith responded that he did not have to know. The accuser noticed a gun on Smith’s ankle when she got up and felt as though she was in danger.
Smith reportedly opened the door for her and kissed her on the forehead as she left. Smith’s attorney, Gerald Hayden, says Smith has a different account of the events that took place.
“He can confirm there was a meeting between Hamlet Smith and a female adult that was within his office,” Hayden said. “They each have different versions of how that meeting had gone. We’ve seen what the complaint states and we just believe it happened differently than what is being stated by this person making the allegations.”
There are rumors swirling about a recorded phone call that was the factor that resulted in police making the arrest, but Hayden says he has not heard the recording at this point.
“A potential recording that allegedly verifies what occurred in the meeting,” he said. “I have not heard that recording. We haven’t received any kind of discovery at this stage, so I’m not in a position to speculate as to what’s going to be on a recording in the future.”
At this time, a date for a preliminary hearing has not been set.