Little Falls man arrested after shooting a 17- and an 18-year-old

A Little Falls man was arrested Friday, Nov. 23, after shooting two teens who he told authorities had broken into his home.

On Nov. 23,  at approximately 1 p.m. the Morrison County Sheriff’s Office received a call of suspicious activity at a residence near Riverwood Drive north of Little Falls. Responding officers met with 64-year-old Byron David Smith at his home at 14319 Elm Street, north of Little Falls.

A release from the Morrison County Sheriff’s Office said Smith immediately told the deputies that he had shot and killed two people breaking into his home the day prior at approximately noon. Deputies then located the bodies of a 17-year-old boy and an 18-year-old woman in the basement of Smith’s home.

The bodies were transported to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office where autopsies will be performed to positively identify them and determine an exact cause of death. The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) responded to assist in processing the crime scene.

During the investigation deputies and agents of the BCA discovered information that led to Smith’s arrest for 2nd degree murder. Formal charges are pending with the Morrison County Attorney’s Office.

Morrison County Sheriff Michel Wetzel said, “A person has every right to defend themselves and their homes, even employing deadly force if necessary.” Circumstances of this case however, led deputies to believe that Smith went beyond that point.

More details of the investigation will be released after Smith’s initial court appearance Monday. A press conference will be held at the Morrison County Government Center, Meeting Room 1, Monday, Nov. 26, at 1 p.m.