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Man executes teen intruders, waits until next day to call cops

  • tig ol bitties1

    He was already in the basement when he heard the noise. He had no way of knowing if they people coming down the steps were armed or not.

    I think the first shot on each is understandable.

    Now killing them after they were wounded on the ground is a different matter....

    "Put your mother in a straight-jacket you punk ass white boy." ~ Mike Tyson

  • ummm no, it's not.

  • temporary insanity.

    They can claim he lost it and gained it back the next day. Just have to convince one person

  • You still have to act reasonably. Eg you couldn't tie them up and shoot them in the knees, elbows, hands etc to torture them. This guy crossed the line when he pulled out another gun and put it under her chin to blow her brains out. I think 2nd degree murder sounds about right.

  • honestly it depends on the law in Minnesota.
    Just having broken into a home could amount to a perceived threat to the homeowner.

  • Kzoo_Spartan

    The best part about this thread is that I knew there would be some Wells-dweller nutjob who would be white-knighting the guy.

    Glad to see I was right.

    "When I was in school they told me practice makes perfect. Then they told me nobody's perfect. So I stopped practicing." --Steven Wright

  • Kzoo_Spartan

    I assume. I don't recall seeing his username around tRCMB much, so even though I don't frequent Wells, I made a guess.

    "When I was in school they told me practice makes perfect. Then they told me nobody's perfect. So I stopped practicing." --Steven Wright

  • I more or less agree with this. During the Chicago flash mobs, not only would I have not felt bad if someone had been prepared and killed one of those punks, I would have enjoyed hearing about it. If he had shot them and they died from the first shot, it's their fault for breaking into his house. But the guy readily admits that he wanted to kill them both out of what seems a lot more like vengeance than defense. He may have a legitimate defense if a psychiatrist can determine he suffered from something resulting from the recurrent break-ins, but if not, he's going to jail for a while.

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  • Bender

    Terrible story. Guy is crazy. You just don't kill two people like that.

    Obviously, the teens missed the sign that said:

    "Intruders will be shot"

    Nίκη για MSU

  • He clearly did not lose it and gain it back. He knows he shot her too many times.

    The only two types of insanity are:

    Cognitive insanity: You must be afflicted with a mental defect for this. Not enough information given to really make a claim. But this has nothing to do with calling or not calling.

    Volitional insanity: This defense only works if you were abused and it caused mental defect.

    It's not like the movies (Primal Fear) or TV shows. You simply cannot claim insanity. There is another common confused term with insanity in legal terms and that's incompetence. However if he is incompetent to stand trial he must be kept in a hospital for the criminally insane. If you've ever had the "pleasure" to be in one of those places, jail is a much better alternative for a prisoner.

  • Minnesotan's have a right by law to defend themselves in their homes. No debating that.

    I fail to see where this guy was threatened to the point of what he did. He hunted these kids, shot them before they even knew he was there, and then executed them both.

    There is no defense for what he did.

    Shooting the boy because he wanted him dead and to put the girl out of her misery is cold blooded murder, not to mention his actions prior to those final shots.

    He could have yelled I am here and I have a gun, those kids would have left. Instead he chose to lurk in the basement and pick them both off like someone hunting deer from a blind.

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  • And I'll tell you why these kinds of things sometimes happen.
    Many homeowners have been successfully sued by home invaders who have hurt themselves during the home invasion or been hurt by the home owner.
    Sometimes home invaders run the risk of being "finished off" by homeowners who don't want run the risk of being sued. This is why forensic evidence is critical to the state's case.
    I bet most cases of home defense are situations where truly panicked home owners do something they would normally consider unthinkable because they are genuinely frightened for their lives.
    And that may be the case in this story. I don't know the facts. But it will be hard to convince 12 of your neighbors that the coup d'gras was necessary without more evidence he was sure a threat was still there.

  • Wow.

    How you can make what those kids suffered greater than what the homeowner did..... Just incredible.

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  • that's certainly one way to interpret the facts we have been given. You could be right. However, whatever he says happened in the context of being interrogated or whatever is only some of the evidence. There may be other facts which are important. Maybe the kids were threatening him as well. We don't know, do we?

    What if they were armed? What if they were brandishing weapons, whether firearms or something else? What are the physical conditions of the defendant? Can he see well? Is he physically week so that he perceives deadly force differently than a young, able-bodied person would?

    These are the kinds of questions we don't know answers to and which may sway a jury determining if they thought he was behaving reasonably or not. The law, and the public will give him some leeway on these questions if there are facts to support them.

  • Well, I know this might be a crazy leap of faith, but given that the dude was pretty forthcoming with facts like "he fell down the stairs and then I shot him in the face" and "she laughed, I got mad, so I shot her too many times in the chest" and admits he administered a clean finishing shot under her chin after dragging her body. You would think that if they were threatening him or brandishing weapons that he was aware of, since those would be extremely important facts to help explain defense, he might be more forthcoming of that information and not just the facts that make him look like a vengeance seeking crazy person.

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  • I am sure the homeowner's defense could convince some sympathetic jury member of a story where the homeowner thought he heard more voices or sounds upstairs and was scared that there could be additional intruders already in the home or on their way - and therefore he felt that he had to finish the first two intruders off so that they could not call out to their friends and give away his position. Then he was scared to leave the basement to call for help until many hours later when he was more sure that the coast was clear.

  • At no point in all of this does he report they were armed. It would help his cause if he did.

    The girl apparently had a substance abuse problem, but that still doesnt excuse what this guy did by blowing her brains out.

    Updated story below.

    On the outskirts of Little Falls, Minn., Crystal Shaeffel walked down the long driveway on Sunday, past the "keep out" sign, to see the house where her teenage brother and her cousin were shot to death on Thanksgiving Day.

    She was met in the driveway by the brother of Byron David Smith, the man who is in the Morrison County Jail on suspicion of second-degree murder after telling deputies he shot the pair when they broke into his house, where he lived alone. He is to make his first court appearance on Monday.

    The bodies of Nicholas Brady, 17, and his cousin Haile Kifer, 18, both of Little Falls, were discovered on Friday when authorities began investigating a missing-persons report and after a car parked down the road from Smith's home prompted a neighbor to report suspicions that something was wrong.

    "They were 17 and 18 years old, and they didn't need to die," Shaeffel told Bruce Smith as she stood in the driveway, tears flowing down her face.

    "That all depends on your perspective," he told her.

    A series of break-ins had made Byron Smith, a 64-year-old retired U.S. State Department worker, frustrated and fearful, his brother said Sunday.

    In the rear of the house, which sits on the bank of the Mississippi River, surrounded by tall pines and birches, is a shattered bedroom window, now boarded over. It was where, Bruce Smith said, the teens used a lead pipe to break the glass, crawl in, walk down a hallway and go downstairs, surprising Byron Smith as he tinkered in his basement workshop over the lunch hour.

    Byron Smith never called 911 but let the bodies lay in his home for just more than 24 hours while the teens' families tried to find them. Bruce Smith said his brother was distraught and didn't know what to do.

    "Put yourself in his shoes after you shoot two people in your basement. How are you going to react?" he said during an interview at the house.

    The brother said this was the latest of eight burglaries within the last few years, with the most recent on Oct. 27, when about $10,000 worth of guns, electronic gear and cash were stolen after thieves broke out a panel in a lower-level door. He said not all the burglaries were reported but that the one last month was reported to the Morrison County Sheriff's Office.

    Loved ones of the two teens, as well as authorities, say the shootings went beyond self-defense. Neighbors described Byron Smith as a loner who liked to shoot his guns often, intimidating and worrying nearby residents.

    Shaeffel said investigators told her that Brady had been shot in the shoulder and head, and that then Kifer was shot.

    She said her brother made good money working for their father's tree-trimming business and didn't have to resort to burglary.

    She said that Kifer had been in treatment more than once for abuse of controlled substances, and speculated that her cousin might have been after pills. Kifer had recently returned to school and had been trying to straighten out her life, Shaeffel said, adding that Kifer had stolen Adderall pills from Shaeffel's home.

    "Yes, she had an addiction problem and stuff, but that doesn't mean she deserves to get murdered at 18 years old," Shaeffel said. "I understand they came there to rob them, or whatever, but shoot them in the shoulder and call the cops."

    Shaeffel, 27, lives near the Smith house and went there Sunday with her close friend, Tiffany Kostohryz.

    "I just wanted to see," Shaeffel said, looking toward the garage. The red-brick house with peeling paint is tucked out of view from the road.

    Smith's neighbor Lori Williams said she had complained to authorities about the frequent shooting on Smith's property, worrying that children playing outside could be hurt. But deputies had told her and her husband that nothing could be done because his property was outside city limits, the couple said.

    They described Smith as an odd man who kept to himself. "He didn't say 'boo,'" Scott Williams said.

    Bruce Smith said his brother, who never married, had traveled the world as a federal employee, working mostly desk jobs and managing as many as 50 people at a time.

    "He was a security officer for the State Department over the past two decades and was responsible for plans and specifications of State Department buildings worldwide," Bruce Smith said.

    He said his brother was upset on Thursday evening when he called him in Baltimore, where Bruce Smith was with his daughter for the holiday.

    "I need you up here now," Bruce Smith said his brother told him.

    When he arrived on Saturday afternoon, sheriff's deputies and the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension were there, and his brother, whom he described as a highly intelligent man, was behind bars.

    Bruce Smith said he believes his brother fired in self defense.

    On Sunday night, a vigil

    Sunday evening, about 200 mourners braved cold temperatures and a biting wind for a vigil at Little Falls High School. They released balloons, tried to keep candles burning, and listened as Nick Brady's older sister, Rachel Brady, told of using social media to ask others whether they had seen the two cousins.

    "They were just really great people," said Rachel Stauffer, 15. "They could make anyone laugh."

    Others spoke of Nick Brady's perpetual smile and how he loved to tell them to "turn a frown upside down."

    Carlee Davich of Little Falls, who coached Kifer in swimming as assistant coach two years ago for the Little Falls High School team, described Kifer's upbeat, infectious personality.

    "She was always happy. She had a way that just made everyone happy. A lot of the swimmers and divers looked up to her," Davich said.

    Emma Schmidt, a senior at Little Falls High School who had known Kifer since middle school, said she was talented and that both were well-liked.

    As for what Kifer was doing in Smith's basement, Emma had no idea. "Everyone's wondering that," she said.

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  • Anybody listen to Drew and Mike? Didn't they interview this guy a few months ago? SIAP in this thread.

    Held it down for Monty Held it down For Iz

  • you only need one jurror and you're starting to get the idea Billy Flynn. wink_msu

    We need to know what we need to know, and jurors ONLY convict defendants on what they're absolutely sure they know.


    Because no citizen wants to go to bed knowing a defendant went to jail because a juror voted on a hunch.

  • I think you are reaching here for excuses to defend this murderer.

    He executed two teenagers in cold blood. His own story.

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  • I know this is a different situation, but how would you guys feel if he happened to one-shot kill them both? Self-defense?

  • Lunchables

    Give him community service and be done with it. Jails are crowded enough as is.

  • Absolutely self defense under the current laws.

  • Yes, one shot each to dismantle the threat, even if they end up dieing from that one shot. But if you keep shooting that's murder imo.

  • Those words in the news story were his own. He's already confessed to cold blooded murder, not much defense left. Much like the guys in this story he's already confessed to executing a defenseless person.

    It's fucked up he was put in this position in the first place but you can't execute people just because they wronged you. He's made it pretty clear in his own words that he wasn't threatened. And again, I have no problem with the first shot of either one of them.

    Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance