NEW LONDON -- Federal authorities have charged a Colorado man more than a month after he was arrested in New London for traveling from out of state to have sex with a 13-year-old girl he met online.
On January 25, 2016, New London police were notified by State Troopers that a missing 13-year-old from Preston was found at the New London Holiday Inn. The girl was found with Nathaniel Smith, 29, of Aurora, Colorado.
Police said Smith met the girl on the messaging app "Kik" about three weeks before he arranged to come to Connecticut to to meet her in person.
New London Deputy Chief Peter Reichard said, "During interviews with Mr. Smith, we found he came from Colorado by a bus, and ended up in the New London bus station after about a five day journey across country."
Police said he went to the victim's Preston home in a cab, and they returned to the bus station intending to go back to Colorado together. When they missed their bus, they booked a room at the Holiday Inn.
Police said Smith and the girl engaged in sexual contact.
On Tuesday, a federal jury indicted Smith for one count of enticement of a minor. For the federal charge he faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison, and a maximum of life in prison.
He also is still facing state charges of sexual assault in the second degree and risk of injury to a minor. He has not entered a plea in that case yet, but is due in court on March 15.
He has been in custody since his January arrest.