Defense rests in Smith trial

The defense, led by attorney Steven Meshbesher and assissted by Adam Johnson, rested today, Monday, April 28, at about 11 a.m. The afternoon session will be reserved for jury instruction by Judge Douglas P. Anderson.

Meshbesher and the prosecution, Brent Wartner and Peter Orput, will give their closing arguments beginning at 9 a.m., Tuesday, April 30.

Byron Smith is accused of killing Haile Kifer and Nicholas Brady after they allegedly broke into his Little Falls home Thanksgiving day 2012.

  • Concerned Citizen

    “allegedly broke into his Little Falls home”……. I don’t Understand how the writer responsible for writing this article trys to inadvertantly paint innocence of these young adults by plugging the word “Allegedly” into the article. There is no doubt they broke into his home, if they hadn’t, why turn the survelience camera around, try the door, go from 1 side of the house to the other, and then break the window to get in? If someone were to ever break into my house, “the 1st Time” I wouldn’t hesitate to protect my home, and my Family with deadly force. Law enforcement is there to investigate crimes, to try to stop criminals from repeatedly committing the same crime over and over. The common sense to that arguement is that if Law enforcement could stop every crime before it happened, we would live in a crime free world, but the reality is, we don’t. Had the Smith residence been properly investigated & processed the 1st few times it was broke into, theres a good chance these 2 young adults wouldn’t have been there breaking into it on that sad thanksgiving day. No-one deserves to live there life in fear of when they or their property will be burglarized or vandelized. However, I do wholeheartedly disagree with the fact that Mr Smith didn’t contact the cops or sherriffs dept as soon as the incident was over, but I also do not believe that he is guilty of 1st degree premeditated murder, or even 2nd degree murder for protecting himself and his home. If guilty of anything, it would be manslaughter, for waiting 24+ hrs to notify law enforcement.

  • Jody Scott Olson

    You posting this twice, 2 days apart indicates that MC Record took their sweet old time in deciding whether to post your criticism of their use of the word “allegedly”. But I agree their break in wasn’t alleged.

    If premeditation includes a man, who in the privacy of his own home is
    prepared in the event of a home invasion, doesn’t this verdict in some
    way criminalize every American citizen who ever went to bed with a
    loaded weapon in his nightstand? What’s more astonishing is that
    this verdict seemingly REDUCES the legal rights and
    protections extended to victim if they are victims of REPEATED crimes. If after being victimized you make doubly sure it doesn’t happen again and move the gun from nightstand to under your pillow…are we saying it is then premeditation?

    Did Smith plan a murder or did
    Smith PLAN to protect himself and his property in the EVENT of yet another crime?

    Smith shared Thanksgiving with family that year he would have fallen
    victim once more. The predictability of this crime makes me wonder how
    much of Smith’s life was being dedicated to standing guard over his
    personal possessions! With the way this pair seemingly, and predictably
    waltzed in and out of Smith’s home; why bother owning a home? Smith’s
    belongings would have been just as safe if he would have stashed his
    valuables under a tree in a public park AND EVEN UNDER A TREE HIS STUFF

    When Smith moved his car and created the
    appearance of being away does it illustrate HIS murder premeditation or
    does it illustrate how PREDICTABLY LAWLESS the home invaders were?

    had to prepare to defend himself in his own home because he wasn’t safe
    and either were his belongings. I think theirs a distinction between a
    man who prepares to defend himself and what is his and one who prepares
    to commit murder. If someone breaks in to my house that many times, I’m
    carrying a gun with me throughout the day too. The life and death of
    these two hinged not on Smith but on whether or not they committed
    another crime against Smith.

    I keep hearing that Smith was “laying in wait”, or the the robbers were “entrapped” or “lured”. How can you draw this conclusion when the sign in his yard said “Keep Out” and his doors and windows were locked down tight? Smith locked them out, he did what any reasonable person should do to prevent theft…how can you conclude laying in wait when he made reasonable moves to prevent them from coming to that final confrontation? They weren’t seduced into to entering, door wide open, they did so against all warning, against all RESPONSIBLE preventative measures…you cannot deem that “laying in wait” when you’ve locked the little ba$#@rds out.

    Someone needs to look into whether the police were negligent. Young adults get into trouble, but there brand of human disregard falls into a completely different category. These two were looting and terrorizing.

    • Concerned Citizen

      Very well stated Judy. I could agree with you more. The whole ordeal is sad. A Person shouldn’t have to live their life in fear, and how these jurors came to their Unanimous decison of guilt on all 4 counts is beyond ability to comprehend. If our justice system truly is this far gone, that the prosecuter of a criminal,(that was killed in the act of committing a felony offense) can get a jury to believe that the criminal was entrapped into committing their crime, I fear what the next 10 years of government will bring.

      That being said, I do believe that Mr Smith should have been charged & found Guilty of Manslaughter in both counts, do to the fact that he moved their bodies, shot more times than neccessary, and waited to call law enforcement for more than 24 hrs.

      The saddest part of this whole situation, is that if Smiths house had been properly investigated the 1st few times it happened, there’s a Darn good chance both thses young adults would still be alive today, as they wouldn’t have been there that fateful Thanksgiving day, committing the felony they did, which ended up cutting their lives short, and ruining the rest of Byron Nelsons life in the process.