UNCC professor arrested on child exploitation charges to appear in court

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A UNC Charlotte professor is facing multiple charges of child sex exploitation.

Robert Herman-Smith will be in court on Monday.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police arrested Herman-Smith on Wednesday night, but officers said that the case is going to be a federal investigation.

A UNC Charlotte spokesperson said the university has been made aware of the arrest and is currently reviewing the charges, but in the meantime, Herman-Smith has been suspended from the university.

Police and agents with the Department of Homeland Security, who have been investigating Herman-Smith since June, searched his Matthews home and charged him with possessing illegal pornography.

"It's super heartbreaking and our neighborhood is full of children, and so it's scary to know that something like that was going on. We have six children ourselves and they are all young,” neighbor Rachel Baxter said.

Herman-Smith is listed on the school’s website as an associate professor in social work.

He held that position at the school since 2014, and was one of the leaders in that department.

He specializes in children's mental health.

In September, when the school announced a federal grant to help improve behavioral health in the area, Herman-Smith was one of the staff members chosen to lead the program.

"I know that's not good for the campus and the look for UNC Charlotte,” student Julian Dulin said.

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