Charges are now filed in the arrest first reported here Wednesday night, that of a now-suspended West Seattle High School instructional assistant accused of arranging online to meet a 14-year-old girl and pay her for sex. 34-year-old Brennan M. Smith, a Ballard resident, remains free after posting bond on $20,000 bail. He is charged with one count of attempted commercial sexual abuse of a minor. As noted in our previous report, he was arrested Tuesday night at a motel in Seatac. King County Sheriff’s Office detectives say he showed up there after communicating by text message with a detective posing as a 14-year-old girl and agreeing to pay “her” $150 for “unprotected sex.” They say the contact was initiated when Smith responded to “an online advertisement … on an escort-service website.” The charging document also said he was found to be in possession of $100 cash and the phone that was used to send text messages to arrange the encounter. In post-arrest questioning, the documents say, Smith claimed he had arranged the encounter because he had “helped prostitutes in the past in an attempt to help them out of the lifestyle. … Detectives asked Smith why he didn’t contact police for assistance if he thought a juvenile was in trouble; his response was he didn’t know and he thought he could just help on his own.” The district has described Smith only as an “instructional assistant”; his now-deleted LinkedIn profile said he was a “special education paraprofessional.” The district declined to answer questions including whether he was working at other schools besides WSHS. His arraignment is scheduled for December 26th.
West Seattle, Washington