ONLY ON 3: Accused rapist’s ex wife says he’s manipulative, liar

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Submitted: Wed, 07/23/2014 - 3:10am
Updated: Thu, 08/07/2014 - 7:52pm

BURGAW, NC (WWAY) — The Pender County Sheriff's Office arrested of Ralph Thomas Smith, 42 of Willard, on Monday.

Smith was charged after an alleged incident was reported to social services and the Sheriff’s office in which Smith had sexual relations with a 14-year-old girl.

You may remember a story we did back in January when Smith though he was going to die of terminal cancer in a few weeks and got married.

Smith was charged with three counts of statutory rape, three counts of statutory sex offense and three counts of indecent liberties with a child. 

Heather Haiss, his ex-wife, says he never had cancer. She says her marriage to Ralph Smith was annulled about a month after it happened she said.

When she told us her husband had cancer, she believed it to be true.

It wasn't until later she found out it was all a lie.

“Was actually made up, it wasn't true he wasn't dying he wasn't sick,” Haiss said to us in a telephone interview.

So she says she packed her bags and moved back to New Bern, North Carolina.

“It was all a lie. It was all made up. He would prey on anybody, on anyone and I was his victim unfortunately,” she said. 

His bond was set at $920,800.00 secured.


  • Tired of the trash says:

    I just don’t understand what is going on with men today. There are so many women out there that will sleep with anyone, why do they go for the kids and mess there lives up. I hope this guy gets as much time as possible, and I hope someone rapes him in prison.

  • tired of hearing it says:

    I just don’t understand what is going on with people. How can any adult look at a child and see something other than a child. He has destroyed people, I hope this poor girl gets the help she needs and in time will be able to heal. What a sick low life scum. I hope he gets what coming to him in prison.

  • John says:

    Well sadly this child is pregnant from this animal and from what I have been told they are keeping the baby. This girl thinks she is in love with this child molester and he will be out of jail very soon. Very sad the way these low life’s manipulate young minds. Hopefully our system will remove her from this very unhealthy environment she lives in and gets her the help she so greatly deserves.

  • Anonomys says:

    Just a thought, but it could be a similar affect in cases where a person is given HIV/AIDS and is feeling hurt and angry. Knowing they are going to die, they decide to infect as many others as possible as a sick form of revenge. In that theory, given that most child sex offenders are victims themselves, it’s quite possible this is the case here. Again, just a thought. I’m not in any way whatsoever defending this sick POS, just playing devils advocate

  • Beth says:

    “In that theory, given that most child sex offenders are victims themselves, it’s quite possible this is the case here”

    I see this comment bandied about in nearly every news story regarding sexual abuse without a shred of substantiation. The mere thought that a victim could be automatically labeled with those proclivities to be thrown in the same same paint bucket as abusers is beyond repulsive and only serves to cast abusers as deserving of sympathy and to level the playing field in favor of the defendant.

    (While I understand you are playing devil’s advocate and mean no real harm, I see this bandied all the time and wish it would stop.)

  • laura hughes says:

    this sob conned a lot of people who gave him money,food,baby items,rent,and prayers!i personally have helped him several times at walmart…..did you all read….it was all a lie and con,he did not have cancer his wife said!i was wondering how someone who was so sick and dying looked pretty good awhile back when he was at walmart without his wife and baby,she was expecting a second he said too….prediters prey on innocent children all the time…think about how many adults he how many children do you think he fooled and raped!!

  • Joe says:

    I’m confused about the ex-wife. Did she marry him because he had cancer or were they together before the cancer story… Who was using who?

  • D.Pittman says:

    There is no way to justify what this piece of trash did. As a victim of molesting(I was 6 years old) it sickens me to think of anyone else having to endure this .As for him having been abused in ANY way, at some point you have to put down that crutch and move on. Its just no excuse,and he is a MONSTER!

  • Double Bass says:

    This whole thing is confusing. Does he or does he not have cancer? If so, or not, who says? He, like many others have been tried, convicted and would be executed by some who know nothing more than what they read. What is the guy’s wife is up to something? what if the kid lied because she didn’t get her way? This happens countless times…….kids lie, period. Let the court decide what happened and what to do about it.

  • Beth says:

    Kids don’t lie, not when it comes to things like this. Why is it every time something like this happens the kid is automatically a liar? If you knew how hard it is to get charges pressed in cases like this, you wouldn’t say such things. There has to be some pretty strong evidence to even get charges, and to get a conviction the charge is usually watered down far from what actually happened. Rape turns into simple assault or sexual battery.

    The reason why there is always strong evidence is simple, kids don’t tell! And when they do it is usually much later after evidence is gone. ALso, depending on whether there was actual penetration involved the evidence can be minimal to none.

    Oh in those cases where the kid later recants? People automatically assume liar. No, many kids are bullied into recanting for the “good of the family.” You have no idea the psychology that comes into play in the molestation and cover-up of molestation of children.

    A child’s biggest fear is they want be believed. I know, I have been there.

  • Guest2020 says:

    If he was a victim of child molestation, that would not absolve him from turning around and inflicting that pain on someone else. He is a grown man who knows the difference between right and wrong. Child molestation affects its victims in different ways and many go on to lead productive lives without victimizing others. Being a victim doesn’t give one the right or even excuse one from victimizing others.

  • bohica says:

    hey walmart man while con and mother of 2 young children a 1 and 3 year old was left home alone several times by their selves for hours at a time while they were shopping,and the truth of the matter the children was feeding them by means of food stamps,the children were taken away by social services,when neighbors reported it and caught them red handed,now the children are doing fine but you did not hear of him getting in trouble,plus several counts of animal cruelity,i guess he got a pat on the back for everything,if he gets out of this,there is no justice, and he says he has cancer and dying hes been dying for 12 years.he has a cow in his backyard,because he knows how to MILK THE SYSTEM,he is a LOWLIFE.TO SAY HES IS DYING OF CANCER,AND DO WHAT HE DOES,WHEN THERE IS PEOPLE OUT THERE THATS REALLY DYING OF CANCER,AND PEOPLE WHO REALLY WANT TO HAVE CHILDERN OF THEIR OWN,WHAT A CRYING SHAME??

  • Disgusted Father says:

    Im still waiting for justice to be served for my 3 step children that suffered physical abuse, psychological abuse, sexual abuse and physical abuse to a child that is autistic all done by the hands of their “father”. Everything has been substantiated by DSS and guess what??? Yup this child predator/chlid sex offender/child abuser is still free to roam the New Hanover County/ Wilmington communities.. My innocent stepchildren are a wreck and they see that our justice system is failing them.. WAKE UP AND LOCK THESE ×&#*£+$&^?** UP!!! Your Honor, Mr . District Attorney and Mr . Detective please HOLD THESE SICK ANIMALS ACCOUNTABLE. Lock them up and force them to answer for their crimes. IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Brittanie says:

    Yes Laura was involved. apparently she had a threesome and Laura is on pills really bad so she basically DoD it for some hydrocodone five mg. pills. they are both sick as hell and need help. Laura is 5 months pregnant also.

  • just passing through says:

    Just curious, but is this recent arrest ( associated with this case? Can’t figure out if they are related cases or not.

  • curious says:

    I was told she was, but not sure of the details yet

  • lied to says:

    I’ve known him 2 years and he was supposed to be dying then he has lied to me as well he even lied on me when I started my own business in competition with his he may have cancer but I don’t think it is as bad as he wants people to think

  • Heather says:

    I want to clarify my part in his life. He said he was dying and his last wish was to know that if he ever got his kids back they would have a loving mother and that would give him peace so he could die. I have raised my children who are all either graduated from college or in college. I cared about him and he played on the fact that I was diagnosed with cancer in july last year. He took my job, my time and that poor childs youth. There was nothing in it for me I was supporting him as was my family financally and more. I was trying to do the right thing and was fooled by the lies and his playing on my own fear of mortality.

  • mae murphy says:

    I have known of him being around Wallace since I was 11 or 12…he has a sister around my age, and even then was trying to hook up with her friends. I am 30 now, so he would have been in his 20s then. The only thing about this story that surprised me is that this is his first charge for something like this.

  • know where you are coming fromlive says:

    This man did the same thing to me and he would have been in his 20’s. Really creepy man. He tries it with everyone and he doesn’t care what age they are. I just pray they ban him from any contact with minors to keep them safe. The community and all surrounding communities should be warned about him.

  • just passing through says:

    Gotcha. Just trying to figure out how she received the *same* charges as this Ralph guy. If her crime was simply knowing that the girl was underage and not reporting it, then wouldn’t she be charged with an “aiding and abetting” charge? Trying to figure out why she was charged with the actual statutory charge… Guess we’ll find out soon enough!

  • Wilmington Father says:

    Pender county sheriff’s office THANK YOU for taking this CHILD SEX OFFENDER off of the streets. This will prevent just another CHILD SEX OFFENDER from coming here to Wilmington where NOTHING happens to them and they continue to do as they please.

  • Painting My Toenails Again says:

    So this man said he had cancer, thought he was going to die & raped a 14 yr old girl? I wonder what on earth will be his defense? There are so many whores floating around OVER the age of 18 that you can ASK to have sex with,they will even dress like a kid 1/2 the time, why take a child’s life & destroy it? Just crazy..

  • frustrated parent says:

    AMEN to that! Our justice system continues to fail these children unless the evidence is perfectly clear and their work is done for them. Our system needs an overhaul (taking into consideration that 90% of children who are sexually abused show no physical evidence after 24 hours, unless there is DNA or violent abuse)…what about the children who come forward a year later? Under the system we have now, unless the perpetrator gets the child pregnant, or someone catches them in the act, the child is left to suffer in fear because their abuser is able to live free. Brunswick County seems to be the best, then Pender, but if the abuse takes place in New Hanover, you can hang it up ever trusting justice will be served, unless there is obvious physical evidence. The perps go on with life…the children are left to suffer. Just ask any child sexual abuse therapists.

  • eddie says:

    I love the way the story starts, Recently married Cancer Victim. Who gives a crap about that , this piece of crap should rot in jail. Nobody should care he has cancer, if he dies then he dies and hopefully it will be soon so we the taxpayers dont have to take care of this crap in prison too long

  • John says:

    I am a family member of the girl that was raped by this animal, I was told the Saturday before his arrest by this girls mother that she was pregnant by this 42 yr old. She didn’t, my wife and I immediately went to the Pender County PD no one there, Sheriffs Dept no one there and finally to the the Pender County jail where I spoke with the magistrate and explained the situation and that there has to be something done immediately. The mother of this child was dropping her and her 10 yr old sister off at this perverts house without checking the home for other children that were supposedly in the home. This girl has been through a lot in her 14 yrs. Her father is currently in prison for raping her 2 yrs ago. My wife and I dropped in to visit this past weekend to find a filthy home with no food, animal feces throughout the home, random children roaming the home and her mother hopped up on pills. I notified DSS and after filing a report the rep told me someone will check it out. I just said get in your county vehicle and just drive out there to see for yourself, in response she told me “we can’t do that anymore”. I told her if something is not done soon something really bad is going to happen out there. Shocker DSS was at there home the following day and removed the children to there grandparents house and just guess who is with them, good ole mom. It is so frustrating, these children need to be in foster care and away from this so called mother.

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