Details emerge in child-molester shooting

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif. Authorities released new information Friday about a suspected child molester who was shot by police Thursday morning near an elementary school in Laguna Niguel.

There are allegations that the suspect molested two young girls in Yorba Linda during a nine-year period. Authorities said Daniel Smith, 44, had been in hiding for the past two months after he allegedly molested a girl in Yorba Linda.

"Since that original incident in the city of Yorba Linda, yet another victim has come forward to Brea Police Department. That case involved a female under the age of 14. He did know both the victim and her family," said Orange County Sheriff's Spokesman Jim Amormino.

The Orange County District Attorney's Office filed four counts against Smith more than a week ago. He was facing a $1 million arrest warrant.

Charges of forcible lewd acts on a child go back to 2001. The fourth crime allegedly happened in March.

A special task force made up of Anaheim and Brea police tracked Smith down to a condo complex in Laguna Niguel Wednesday, where he was visiting friends.

Investigators said Smith was shot more than once by a 20-year-veteran Anaheim police officer after he took off running. Police won't disclose if Smith had a weapon, saying it's still under investigation.

"He's known to carry a weapon. He has vowed to people that he will not go down without a fight," said Amormino.

Smith served two years in state prison for possession of methamphetamine in 1996. He was also sentenced to more than a year for receiving stolen property in the 1990s.

According to court documents, Smith was tried before a jury in L.A. County on a number of charges a year ago, including child molestation and lewd acts on a child in Alhambra. The charges were either dismissed or he was acquitted by the jury.

Smith remains hospitalized in stable condition. Authorities say he is expected to survive.

When he's released from the hospital, Smith will be booked on the $1 million warrant for child molestation.

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