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Minn homeowner convicted of premeditated murder
www.foxnews.com ^ | 4/29/14 | unknown

Posted on 04/30/2014 7:13:29 AM PDT by armydawg505

LITTLE FALLS, Minn. – A Minnesota homeowner who shot and killed two teenagers during a break-in was convicted Tuesday of premeditated murder.

Bryon Smith had claimed he was simply defending himself during the break-in at his home in the small city of Little Falls on Thanksgiving Day 2012. Smith's attorney said the 65-year-old was fearful after previous burglaries.

But prosecutors argued that Smith waited in his basement and intended to kill the teens. A total of nine shots were fired at 17-year-old Nick Brady and 18-year-old Haile Kifer.

Jurors began deliberating Tuesday morning and within three hours had a verdict: Guilty on two counts each of first-degree and second-degree murder. Mothers of the teens cried as the verdicts were read, while Smith showed no emotion. Defense attorney Steve Meshbesher said he would appeal.

The teens' killings stirred debate around the state and in Little Falls -- a Mississippi River city of 8,000 about 100 miles northwest of Minneapolis -- about how far a homeowner can go in responding to a threat. Minnesota law allows deadly force to prevent a felony from taking place in one's home or dwelling, but one's actions must be considered reasonable under the circumstances.

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Society
KEYWORDS: haile; purpledrank; robotripping; rxthefts; strange; weed; yesterday
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This is a strange case. The home had been broken into before by these "teens" along with other burglaries the day before this and the judge refuses to allow the history to be admitted as evidence? Its "irrelevant?" But the homeowner goes to the extreme of setting a trap for the criminals and sure enough, they bite. He shoots and kills the first kid and then waits while the second kid comes on down for his dose of lead. Was that Darwinism at work? Should he have taken off? Yes. The homeowner ended up trapping himself with the audio tape and his comments. Multiple shots and the final shot did Smith in. I sympathize with anyone trying to protect their property and I have strategically located guns in my house but he went far overboard and is guilty of murder.
1 posted on 04/30/2014 7:13:29 AM PDT by armydawg505
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To: armydawg505

You are absolutely 100% correct. As a Prosecutor, this is an easy call. This was no different than hunting them down and killing them.


2 posted on 04/30/2014 7:20:22 AM PDT by RIghtwardHo
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To: RIghtwardHo

Yeah except they were in his house committing a crime???


3 posted on 04/30/2014 7:27:35 AM PDT by Resolute Conservative
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To: RIghtwardHo

The homeowner was defending his property from multiple attacks from these “youths,” and you two insist on calling this “murder?” The homeowner knew these stupid kids would be back, and he knew the police wouldn’t help him defend his property - what was he supposed to do? Issue a strong warning to anyone attempting to break down the door? Those stupid kids refused to learn from their earlier experiences.


4 posted on 04/30/2014 7:32:27 AM PDT by Ken522
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To: armydawg505

Please note the pictures of the two teens.

All sweet and nice.

I get a feeling that we are receiving the ‘travyon’ treatment when it comes to pictures of the criminals.


5 posted on 04/30/2014 7:36:09 AM PDT by Hulka
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To: RIghtwardHo

Except that it took place inside his home.


6 posted on 04/30/2014 7:36:52 AM PDT by Hulka
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To: armydawg505

Defending his property is one thing. Murdering those kids was something decidedly different. It wasn’t as if he caught them by accident in the act. He made the decision to wait for them with the intent to kill them, even though they weren’t armed and putting him in immediate fear for his life, and not turn them over to the police.

It is not what I would normally say, but, in this case, I would like him to get the same treatment.


7 posted on 04/30/2014 7:38:07 AM PDT by DickBrannigan (When did logic become reversed, and right became wrong, and wrong became right?)
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To: armydawg505

Additional comments here:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/3150105/posts


8 posted on 04/30/2014 7:41:23 AM PDT by SZonian (Throwing our allegiances to political parties in the long run gave away our liberty.)
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To: RIghtwardHo

>> This was no different than hunting them down and killing them.

Are you insane?


9 posted on 04/30/2014 7:42:43 AM PDT by Ray76
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To: armydawg505

By preparing an ambush,having a stock of food and water at his ambush position,RECORDING the event, and delaying calling the police, this man insured his conviction.


10 posted on 04/30/2014 7:43:49 AM PDT by hoosierham (Freedom isn't free)
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To: DickBrannigan

The jury listening to the recording he made after the killings really couldn’t decide any other way. And it took them just three hours.

He called them not human, vermin. Said he was cleaning up the vomit.

His attorney screwed up not putting him on the stand to explain himself in person.


11 posted on 04/30/2014 7:44:55 AM PDT by DManA
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To: RIghtwardHo

It was not “hunting them down...” ;it was more like setting a trap for varmints that keep getting in the chickenhouse.But American law and common law doesn’t allow setting lethal traps for humans,no matter the provocation, unless it is a government agency doing the trapping.


12 posted on 04/30/2014 7:48:18 AM PDT by hoosierham (Freedom isn't free)
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To: Resolute Conservative

But people that are incapacitated are not a threat to you. The girl was shot twice. He drug her over to a tarp and put the gun under her chin and pulled the trigger. That’s murder. Self defense is not just about killing. It’s stopping a threat. If the attacker is killed during the self defense, that’s what makes it ok and legal. If they are injured and can’t move, they are no longer a threat to you. Now it’s time to render aid and call the police. You don’t execute them on the spot. That’s why we have jails and prisons. That’s why we have courts. It’s why the bad guys aren’t arrested and shot in the street.
What smith did was a crime. Yes, the kids shouldn’t have been in his house. But teenage breaking and entering is not a capital offense.


13 posted on 04/30/2014 8:10:22 AM PDT by christx30 (Freedom above all.)
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To: armydawg505

Sad story. It was the proper verdict. Tragic all the way around.


14 posted on 04/30/2014 8:14:16 AM PDT by adaven
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To: hoosierham
By preparing an ambush,having a stock of food and water at his ambush position,RECORDING the event, and delaying calling the police, this man insured his conviction.

And his "I gave her a good, clean finishing shot" comment probably didn't endear him to the jurors.

15 posted on 04/30/2014 8:14:30 AM PDT by Drew68
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To: christx30

In Texas lethal force is legal for crimes of theft by night and other felonies.


16 posted on 04/30/2014 8:20:11 AM PDT by Resolute Conservative
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To: armydawg505

He set up a Man Trap at the end of the day, this illegal in all 50 states. While I empathize with his desire to protect his home, be clearly intended to kill, premeditated and planned.


17 posted on 04/30/2014 8:21:57 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: adaven
Sad story. It was the proper verdict. Tragic all the way around.

Yep. This story reminded me of the (Oklahoma pharmacist) Jerome Ersland case. You're just not allowed to murder people, even in your own home, even if you're doing society a favor by "cleaning up the vomit."

Life isn't a Charles Bronson film.

18 posted on 04/30/2014 8:23:21 AM PDT by Drew68
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To: armydawg505
I sympathize with anyone trying to protect their property and I have strategically located guns in my house but he went far overboard and is guilty of murder.

I agree he is guilty of murder, but premeditated? I'm not sure I would have gone that far but then I haven't heard all the evidence.

19 posted on 04/30/2014 8:23:34 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: Ken522

He created a man trap, that’s illegal in all 50 states.

if all he wanted to do was protect his property, tell me, why did he continue to shoot them after they were down and he knew they were unarmed? And why did he wait over a day after he did it to tell anyone? And most of all, why did he bother to record the whole thing for posterity?

This guy’s no hero, he’s a murderer. The folks killed were criminals as well, no defense for them entering his home, but he clearly intended to kill. He set up a trap, premeditated and executed it.

Like it or not, that’s murder in all 50 states.


20 posted on 04/30/2014 8:24:39 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: christx30

Coroner testified that any of the shots delivered would have been fatal by themselves. The “finishing shot” on the girl is irrelevent.

As I said yesterday, the thieves brought this on themselves. I wouldn’t care if it was Ed Gein’s house they’d broken into... They initiated their own death by invading this guys house, again, and again, and again...


21 posted on 04/30/2014 8:25:00 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: Drew68
"Life isn't a Charles Bronson film."

Too bad. There'd be far fewer criminals running around racking up huge rap sheets if it were...

22 posted on 04/30/2014 8:26:03 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: Ken522
The homeowner knew these stupid kids would be back, and he knew the police wouldn’t help him defend his property - what was he supposed to do?

They broke in, he fired, he shot and wounded them both. One thing he shouldn't have done was then to go to the two intruders and deliberately fire kill shots into both of them. That's where the murder comes in.

23 posted on 04/30/2014 8:26:49 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: DoodleDawg

Oh it was clearly premeditated, he set up a man trap, set up the bait, and waited with full intent to kill, that’s premeditated murder in all 50 states.

This case was open and shut from the get go, anyone who thinks what this guy did was anything less than premeditated murder based on the evidence is fully and completely ignorant of the law.


24 posted on 04/30/2014 8:27:25 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: Dead Corpse
The “finishing shot” on the girl is irrelevent.

He didn't know that when he delivered the kill shot. His intent was to end her life.

As I said yesterday, the thieves brought this on themselves. I wouldn’t care if it was Ed Gein’s house they’d broken into... They initiated their own death by invading this guys house, again, and again, and again...

Then charge the two with murder along with the homeonwer.

25 posted on 04/30/2014 8:30:24 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: DoodleDawg

They broke in, he fired, he shot and wounded them both. One thing he shouldn’t have done was then to go to the two intruders and deliberately fire kill shots into both of them. That’s where the murder comes in.

___________

I am not sure that is always true. If someone shoots and wounds a criminal and the criminal is moving around who is to say that the criminal isn’t trying to get to his gun to shoot back.


26 posted on 04/30/2014 8:31:00 AM PDT by Chickensoup (Leftist totalitarian fascism is on the move.)
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To: Dead Corpse

Sorry, its not irrelevant, its completely relevant. Self defense means you defend yourself, not you incapacitate someone drag them somewhere else so they won’t bleed on your carpet then shoot them again, wait a full day before telling anyone.

This guys a murderer, he set up a man trap, and fully intended to kill. That’s illegal in every state of this union and always has been. The level of ignorance of the law being displayed here is amazing.

This was an open and shut case and the right verdict was returned.


27 posted on 04/30/2014 8:31:10 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: Chickensoup

What Gun? Are you remotely familiar with this case? He shot them, then physically dragged them to another part of his house so they wouldn’t bleed on the carpet, telling them they were dead as he did it, and shot them again.

They were incapacitated, this was cold blooded premeditated murder, trying to argue otherwise shows a level of ignorance of the law that I would expect at Democratic Underground.


28 posted on 04/30/2014 8:32:57 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: DoodleDawg
His intent was to end her life.

He testified that he thought she was dying anyway and in pain. Coroner backs this up...

29 posted on 04/30/2014 8:33:28 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: Resolute Conservative

If you read the facts of the case you will absolutely change your tune. I did.


30 posted on 04/30/2014 8:34:29 AM PDT by thefactor (yes, as a matter of fact, i DID only read the excerpt)
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To: Chickensoup
I am not sure that is always true. If someone shoots and wounds a criminal and the criminal is moving around who is to say that the criminal isn’t trying to get to his gun to shoot back.

If you can walk up to one, place the muzzle of your rifle under her chin, and then pull the trigger then I'd say there wasn't much of a threat from her.

31 posted on 04/30/2014 8:34:36 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: HamiltonJay
The Law? "The law is often but the Tyrants will and always so when it violates the Rights of the individual".

When you are IN YOUR HOME, minding your own business, and someone breaks in intending to rob you... At that point, their lives are forfeit.

Period.

32 posted on 04/30/2014 8:35:16 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: HamiltonJay

I’d go with murder, not premeditated. He didn’t go hide in their house.


33 posted on 04/30/2014 8:35:49 AM PDT by Ray76
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To: thefactor

All of the facts? Or just the ones allowed by the “judge”?


34 posted on 04/30/2014 8:37:17 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: Dead Corpse
He testified that he thought she was dying anyway and in pain. Coroner backs this up...

So 'putting her out of her misery' is still murder.

35 posted on 04/30/2014 8:38:31 AM PDT by DoodleDawg
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To: Resolute Conservative; Dead Corpse
Some facts:

He parked his truck several blocks away and turned off all his lights, because he was sure the intruders only entered homes they were certain were empty of people. He also bought tarps to use as shrouds before he moved his truck.

He rearranged the furniture in his basement so he could fire from concealment, and he stayed in his hiding place with his cameras, food, drink, and reading material for at least six hours.

While he was waiting he had audiotape running, in which he could be heard practicing what he would say to the police and to his lawyer.

He had the intruders under video surveillance before they entered the home, and watched them for a long time searching for valuables, which he had already secured down in the basement.

He did not call the police.

When the first teen came down the basement stairs, he fired at him from cover. After he went down, he walked over to the gutshot teen and said calmly: "you're dead" and then fired a killing blow. Then he wrapped him up in a tarp and hid his body in the next room, went back to his hiding place and waited for the girl.

When she came to the top of the stairs and called the boy's name, he shot her and she fell down the stairs. He walked up to her and calmly said: "Oh, so sorry about that." Then he shot her twice more in the chest.

Then he wrapped her up in a tarp while she was still breathing.

He went into the next room and got a new weapon, and then took a minute to place a gun under her chin and whisper abuse to her before he finished her off.

Then he made himself some dinner, watched some TV and went to sleep. The next morning he got up, went about his usual routine and asked his neighbor if he knew a good lawyer.

His neighbor called the police, not Smith. He just sat there with bodies in his house for over 24 hours.

36 posted on 04/30/2014 8:39:13 AM PDT by thefactor (yes, as a matter of fact, i DID only read the excerpt)
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To: HamiltonJay
He shot them,
So what?

then physically dragged them to another part of his house so they wouldn’t bleed on the carpet,
So what?

telling them they were dead as he did it,
So what?

and shot them again.
That's the murder.

37 posted on 04/30/2014 8:40:08 AM PDT by Ray76
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To: DickBrannigan

He KNEW they were unarmed?


38 posted on 04/30/2014 8:41:01 AM PDT by SMARTY ("When you blame others, you give up your power to change." Robert Anthony)
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To: DoodleDawg

Not in my book.

This “decision” will have negative repercussions going forward for anyone shooting someone in defense of their home. MN is already a “duty to retreat” State. How soon will we be a “if they break in, you cannot harm them as long as they don’t harm you” State?

The myopia on these threads is sickening...


39 posted on 04/30/2014 8:41:31 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: thefactor
Had they not broken in, they'd be alive, stoned, and stealing from someone else...

Facts not allowed by the Judge. Nor was the police's "non-response" to previous robberies of his house.

40 posted on 04/30/2014 8:43:19 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: Ken522

So five shots to one kid and two to another is simply protecting yourself? Wounding one, having a misfire saying “oops I am sorry”, then walks up to an obvious non-combative girl, says “You’re dead...b$tch” and then kills her is protecting your life and property?

Sorry but there is reasonable and non-reasonable. Execution is not reasonable.


41 posted on 04/30/2014 8:47:52 AM PDT by aft_lizard
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To: HamiltonJay

I am not sure that is always true. If someone shoots and wounds a criminal and the criminal is moving around who is to say that the criminal isn’t trying to get to his gun to shoot back.
_______________

I was not directly addressing this case, I said I wasn’t sure this was always the case.


42 posted on 04/30/2014 8:51:58 AM PDT by Chickensoup (Leftist totalitarian fascism is on the move.)
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To: DoodleDawg

I am not sure that is always true. If someone shoots and wounds a criminal and the criminal is moving around who is to say that the criminal isn’t trying to get to his gun to shoot back.
_______________

I was not directly addressing this case, I said I wasn’t sure this was always the case.


43 posted on 04/30/2014 8:52:18 AM PDT by Chickensoup (Leftist totalitarian fascism is on the move.)
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To: Drew68
And his "I gave her a good, clean finishing shot" comment probably didn't endear him to the jurors.

Almost took a page from the Outlaw Josey Wales:

"They were decently fed, and then they were decently shot."

44 posted on 04/30/2014 8:53:39 AM PDT by Night Hides Not (For every Ted Cruz we send to DC, I can endure 2-3 "unviable" candidates that beat incumbents.)
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To: Dead Corpse

I read his friends Mr Andersons opinion, and while I sympathize with what the man went through leading up to the murders he still murdered them, fact. The man only reported ONCE after 13 or so break ins that he was a victim of robbery, he never confronted the kids that he knew it was them or suspected them of the burglaries just asked them to stop coming over. Yes the man obviously tripped and had a high paranoia. But there is something called common sense. Your opinion on this is extremely extremely disturbing.


45 posted on 04/30/2014 8:56:57 AM PDT by aft_lizard
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To: armydawg505

Or, we could look at the big picture. Burglars got what they had coming and a dangerously demented guy will rot in prison. Why take sides?


46 posted on 04/30/2014 8:58:15 AM PDT by anton
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To: aft_lizard

There’s no question the guy is sick and that he committed murder. But they came into his house. They were not entering or in a doorway, they were well inside his home and going into his cellar. He didn’t roam the streets looking for them. He didn’t go to their house kick in the door and blast them. He didn’t hide in their house. He didn’t hide in their basement. He didn’t jump out of the bushes outside his home. No. They came into his house and they came with bad intent. That got what they deserved, except for the finishing shot, which is murder.


47 posted on 04/30/2014 9:07:36 AM PDT by Ray76
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To: aft_lizard
he never confronted the kids that he knew it was them or suspected them of the burglaries just asked them to stop coming over.

Which, is probably illegal. MN has some screwed up laws.

Your opinion on this is extremely extremely disturbing.

Why? Because I don't like criminals? Why are you so intent on coddling them? I find THAT disturbing...

I am not a soft-hearted liberal. I am tired of our laws variously being ignored while bad laws get enforced twice victimizing the law abiding. If those we entrust to protect us from criminals FAIL to do so, then it is our RIGHT to do so ourselves.

We can quibble for days over methodology, by I think it is safe to say there will be ZERO recidivism from these two drug addicted thieves.

48 posted on 04/30/2014 9:07:50 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (Tri nornar eg bir. Binde til rota...)
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To: armydawg505

In Texas no self respecting DA would have taken this to a grand jury.


49 posted on 04/30/2014 9:15:33 AM PDT by fella ("As it was before Noah so shall it be again,")
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To: Dead Corpse

My problem isnt self-defense. He had every right to sit and wait, to prepare himself and to shoot them. He stopped two felons from robbing other people, and who knows maybe elevating to armed robberies or murder to get their next fix. Commendable. But my problem with your viewpoint is that he was within rights to execute them. No he wasn’t. Once the kid was down and he was able to walk up to him and do a spot inspection he should have stopped. Heck on the boy he shot him through the hand between the eyes AFTER he loaded him up on a tarp and dragged him off the carpet so he wouldnt stain the carpet. Thats completely unreasonable. I think if he would have gotten off it would have done more harm to the right to self defense in the home in Minnesota than if he was convicted, otherwise in a state like Minny it would be used as evidence that the law is broken and needs fixed. Now we can say the law works.


50 posted on 04/30/2014 9:18:39 AM PDT by aft_lizard
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