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Nationwide Hunt For Former Reality TV Star Accused Of Trying To Meet A Teenage Girl For Sex
Illinois deputies issued a nationwide search warrant for Connor Smith, a former contestant on MTV's "Are You The One?" after he allegedly agreed to meet an undercover detective he believed to be a teenage girl.
Illinois sheriff’s deputies are searching for a former MTV reality show star accused of trying to meet a child for a sexual encounter.
Connor Smith, 32, is wanted on a nationwide arrest warrant for traveling to meet a minor, grooming, and disseminating harmful material, according to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli told Oxygen.com that as of Thursday morning, Smith has not turned himself in and is still on the run. Last Friday, a Lake County judge set a $1 million bond on the arrest warrant.
For several weeks, deputies said the "Are You The One?" alum was communicating online with a person he believed to be a girl under the age of 15, but the individual was actually an undercover detective. During the conversations, Smith allegedly sent “the child” sexually explicit images and videos of himself. He also arranged to meet the “the child” for a sexual encounter, according to a press release.
Then, on Feb. 9, Smith allegedly drove to pick up the girl and have sex with her, according to deputies. When Smith arrived, detectives said they tried to arrest him, but he was able to escape and drove off in his vehicle.
This is not the first time Smith has been charged for sexual crimes with a child.
In October 2021, he was charged with raping a 16-year-old girl in Indiana, Oxygen.com previously reported. The teen told police she'd been talking to a man online about buying a cat, then he showed up at a relative's home in Hobart, Indiana and allegedly abducted her — pulling her out of a window. She later told investigators that she lied about being pulled out a window and had voluntarily agreed to sneak out to see the man, who she knew as “Champ,” on July 16, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
The teen told police Smith allegedly forced her to perform a sex act on him in his pickup truck, threatened her, then took her to a motel room, where the teen alleged he punched her, hit her, and forced her to undress, according to court documents. She then told authorities he forced her to perform oral sex on him again, then continued to attack her on the bed. He allegedly told her he would “make her disappear” if she didn’t cooperate. She also told investigators that Smith strangled her and at one point she passed out. When she regained consciousness, he was slapping her, according to court documents. She said Smith drove her back to her relative’s home after the attack, and some of the relatives chased his truck — writing down his license plate number, which authorities determined was linked to Smith. DNA from a sexual assault kit was also determined to be a likely match to Smith, authorities said.
In October 2022, prosecutors in Indiana dismissed the charges after deciding they didn’t have enough evidence to convict Smith. The prosecutor told Patch the girl was no longer cooperating with law enforcement, and her office was unable to reach the teenager.
“These accusations have affected my life in more ways than you could possibly imagine,” Smith said to Patch through his attorney. “Before the accusations, I had just started a very promising career and was let go due to the very public nature of this whole ordeal. All I can say is thanks to the love and support of my family and friends, I am doing everything I can to put this ordeal behind me.”
Smith appeared on season three of MTV’s "Are You The One?" in 2015, a reality series in which he and the other contestants tried to find their "perfect match" in order to win $1 million, People magazine reported. During episode five, Smith did meet his perfect match, though the couple broke up following the show.
Lake County deputies said if you see Smith, do not approach him, but instead call 911.