Mount Vernon mother becomes 1st senior criminal investigator in Westchester DA’s Office

A Mount Vernon mother rose above hardship to trailblaze a career in investigating cases involving the most vulnerable victims.

News 12 Staff

Mar 21, 2022, 9:37 PM

Updated 853 days ago

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A Mount Vernon mother rose above hardship to trailblaze a career in investigating cases involving the most vulnerable victims.
Latheia Smith is the first woman to become a senior criminal investigator in the Westchester County District Attorney's Office.
"It's a position that has been held by men for so many years, and us women can do it too,” she says.
Smith says her road to her career in criminal justice started with a need to provide.
"I was a teen mother, I had my first child at the age of 16,” she says.
Smith investigates some of the most egregious cases in the county involving domestic violence, sex crimes and child abuse.
"I turned to law enforcement to protect,” she says.
Smith says that has been her goal since she first became a police officer in Mount Vernon 18 years ago, where she never let her size or gender bar her from doing the job.
“Sometimes the stature of someone isn't the only thing that gets an individual to comply,” she says.
Smith traded her bulletproof vest for a suit to seek justice as an investigator at the district attorney's office, where she is gifted in extracting information, according to District Attorney Mimi Rocah.
"I was impressed by her immediately because she is such a tough but warm person,” Rocah says. “She was going to be promoted, regardless if this was a first, based on her merit.”
Smith, a mother of four, is charged with leading other investigators in the special prosecutions division while still handling her own load of cases.
"Although cases don't always turn out the way you want, at least you have done your best for that family or that child,” Smith says.


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