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Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:26 PM

Minnesota man kills teens in home, delays telling cops because of holiday

http://www.mercurynews.com/nation-world/ci_22068002/minnesota-man-kills-teens-home-delays-telling-cops

Minnesota man kills teens in home, delays telling cops because of holiday
By Joseph Lindberg, St. Paul Pioneer Press

A Minnesota man who killed two teenagers in his home on Thanksgiving Day was charged with murder Monday after he told investigators he shot the two at close range before "finishing" them with shots to the head.

Byron David Smith, 64, was charged with two counts of second-degree murder without premeditation in Morrison County District Court in the deaths of Nicholas Brady, 17, and Haile Kifer, 18. The pair were cousins.

Smith claims Brady and Kifer broke into his home in Little Falls, about 90 miles northwest of Minneapolis, and that he was "fearful" they had weapons, according to the criminal complaint...

In one of the more bizarre elements of the shooting, Smith told police he did not reach out to authorities for an entire day because "he didn't want to trouble us on a holiday," Wetzel said.

47 replies, 3368 views

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Reply Minnesota man kills teens in home, delays telling cops because of holiday (Original post)
jsr Nov 2012 OP
Drale Nov 2012 #1
geardaddy Nov 2012 #19
brewens Nov 2012 #2
Mangoman Nov 2012 #5
rbixby Nov 2012 #26
Bucky Nov 2012 #6
Mangoman Nov 2012 #11
slackmaster Nov 2012 #12
closeupready Nov 2012 #3
MagickMuffin Nov 2012 #7
closeupready Nov 2012 #10
Fumesucker Nov 2012 #13
closeupready Nov 2012 #16
Fumesucker Nov 2012 #21
MagickMuffin Nov 2012 #17
closeupready Nov 2012 #20
MagickMuffin Nov 2012 #23
closeupready Nov 2012 #32
Jenoch Nov 2012 #37
denverbill Nov 2012 #8
jasonr256 Nov 2012 #25
SomethingFishy Nov 2012 #28
rug Nov 2012 #30
hrmjustin Nov 2012 #35
ibegurpard Nov 2012 #34
JVS Nov 2012 #40
uncle ray Nov 2012 #41
Bucky Nov 2012 #4
slackmaster Nov 2012 #9
Mangoman Nov 2012 #14
slackmaster Nov 2012 #15
pkdu Nov 2012 #18
Logical Nov 2012 #24
rbixby Nov 2012 #27
renie408 Nov 2012 #29
TwilightGardener Nov 2012 #22
Blue_Tires Nov 2012 #43
upaloopa Nov 2012 #31
Jenoch Nov 2012 #38
LisaL Nov 2012 #33
Brickbat Nov 2012 #36
JVS Nov 2012 #39
Shilo Nov 2012 #42
Blue_Tires Nov 2012 #44
TwilightGardener Nov 2012 #45
Lizzie Poppet Nov 2012 #46
glinda Apr 2014 #47

Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:33 PM

1. This is the type of story that makes me want to review my stance on the Death Penalty

He killed two young people who were not a threat because he is a psychopath.

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Response to Drale (Reply #1)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:22 PM

19. And as a Minnesotan, I say let him rot in Stillwater

for the rest of his life. We don't need the DP here.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:52 PM

2. Shooting an intruder is one thing, making sure to finish them of is insane. I for

one wouldn't ever shoot anyone unless they were armed or attacked me. I own guns but would only use one to run someone off or hopefully make them stop and hold them for the police to arrive. I'd maybe fire a warning shot if they were running off with some of my stuff. There isn't anything valuable enough in here that one or two guys could run off with that would be worth shooting someone over.

If I did happen to have something worth a fortune someone was after, like maybe a winning lottery ticket, that would get someone shot! Just ordinary stuff that I could replace wouldn't be worth it. We have too many jackwagons that actually hope to have a reason to blow someone away some day!

This guy does have a point though, executing people does tend to ruin the festive atmosphere.

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Response to brewens (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:04 PM

5. "unless they were armed"

 

Thats the big risk. If you just shot somebody, and they DO have a gun on them, it is likely they will use it on you unless they are dead.

Do you wait to see if you get shot ? ...or do you shoot the intruder again ? With that said, it would appear this guy was in a position to judge if they were still a danger.

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #5)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:54 PM

26. He finished off the girl after the first shot

by holding the gun under her chin and pulling the trigger, after he dragged her into another room and put her on a tarp. Doesn't sound to me like he was doing that just to prevent her from possibly shooting him.

From the full telling of the story, it sounds like this guy was a total psychopath, and it also seems kind of unlikely that these two kids actually broke into the house.

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Response to brewens (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:05 PM

6. Finishing them off, regardless of how festive he was, is legally premeditation.

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Response to Bucky (Reply #6)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:08 PM

11. I would think it would be legal...

 

to shoot an intruder twice if they were still a threat.
Not saying this is the case , but we all can see how a wounded gunman is still a threat.

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Response to brewens (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:09 PM

12. Not only insane but it demonstrates malice aforethought, one of the requirements for murder.

 

I'd maybe fire a warning shot if they were running off with some of my stuff.

That is a bad idea. There is a woman in Florida who was recently sentenced go 20 years for doing it.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:56 PM

3. He over-reacted, but this was armed robbery they were committing.

They were armed and dangerous.

Whether armed thugs are young and beautiful or old and ugly, physical appearance matters not one little bit as to the guilt of the criminal(s), IMO.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:06 PM

7. Nowhere in the article does it state the kids had weapons are were "Armed and Dangerous"

Perhaps you should read it.

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Response to MagickMuffin (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:07 PM

10. Other sources have stated they had lead pipes.

In the hands of an 18-year-old against someone in his 60's, that's armed and dangerous.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #10)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:11 PM

13. Where do you even *get* a lead pipe in this day and age, let alone more than one?

I haven't seen a lead pipe in thirty years or more and I work with metal quite a bit.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #13)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:15 PM

16. The Examiner's story mentions this fact:

>>Smith's brother, Bruce told the Star Tribune that Smith was a retired U.S. State Department worker and he became fearful after his home had been broken into many times. Bruce said not all the burglaries were reported but the most recent one on Oct. 27.

Bruce said that the teens used a lead pipe to break the glass and crawl into the home and surprised Byron who was in the basement workshop as they walked down the stairs.

The Morrison County sheriff's office reports one break-in on Oct. 27 where Byron reported losing gold coins, two guns, cash, photo equipment and a ring.

Morrison County Sheriff Michel Wetzel said that the circumstances at the scene led police to conclude that Byron's actions were in excess of simple self-defense.<<

http://www.examiner.com/article/bodies-of-missing-little-falls-cousins-found-man-s-basement

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Response to closeupready (Reply #16)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:28 PM

21. Using a "lead pipe" to bludgeon someone is a very old cliche

But it's a cliche from when lead pipe was a not uncommon thing to see around, that is a long way from the case today when every piece of metal that's not encased in solid concrete is being hauled to the scrapyard with all due haste.

I'm practically dumbfounded that these kids found lead pipe(s) and then planned to use it (them) to bludgeon someone.

Just one of those little details that jumps out at you.



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Response to closeupready (Reply #10)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:20 PM

17. Again go to the OP link

There you will find the police report. The Killer never mentions they had ANY weapons. He shot them as they were walking down the stairs, before he even sees their arms or faces.

So, where are the links to your other sources?


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Response to closeupready (Reply #20)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:37 PM

23. Again the Police REPORT

and the original article in the OP.

If the Killer does NOT mention it in the police report then they were NOT ARMED!

This Killer also states in his Police Report that he killed the boy first. Then the girl went downstairs and he shot her. She tumbled and laughed at him. He therefore shot her again until his gun jammed, he then grabbed the gun on his person and starting shooting her some more in the chest. Then his final act of shooting this young woman was to shoot her under her chin to end her suffering.


Also from your link it only states they used the pipe to break the window!

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Response to MagickMuffin (Reply #23)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 07:44 PM

32. One piece of evidence amongst many.

There will also be testimony as to sequence of events, mental health of defendant, prior criminal record of assailants, etc.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #10)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 01:31 AM

37. I am sure the term 'lead pipe' was used just to describe

a short, metal pipe used to break the window. Smith told police that neither teen was armed. Apparently, the teens lleft the pipe upstairs after using it to break the window.

http://www.startribune.com/local/180853761.html?page=2&c=y

Certainly the homeowner had the right to defend himself and his property, just not in the manner or the extent that he did so. He will die in prison.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:07 PM

8. Where does it say they were armed?

For all I read here, they could have broken in to find a place inside to make out or something.

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Response to denverbill (Reply #8)


Response to jasonr256 (Reply #25)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 06:01 PM

28. So do you shoot kids who cut across your lawn?

Where do you draw the line? You claim they shouldn't be on your property, is death a proper punishment for trespassing?

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Response to jasonr256 (Reply #25)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 06:22 PM

30. You would be indicted for killing a trespasser.

Rightly so.

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Response to jasonr256 (Reply #25)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:26 PM

35. Welcome to DU!

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:06 PM

34. you don't shoot intruders and then wait a day to call the authorities

911 doesn't take days off...

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Response to ibegurpard (Reply #34)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 04:43 AM

40. You're right, but does delay in reporting a killing make the killing more severe?

To use analogy from driving. When you have an accident you're supposed to report it, fail to do so is charged as hit and run, but hit and run is something quite different from using your delay to claim that it is attempted vehicular homicide.

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Response to JVS (Reply #40)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 05:06 AM

41. he didn't report it, the neighbors tipped the popo off. n/t.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:03 PM

4. I'm gonna say vodka, abuse of prescription painkillers, and a steady diet of Hannity on the radio.

It'd make me think about killing for a few days too, until my blood pressure meds kicked in

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:07 PM

9. That guy is seriously mentally ill. This is a murder case.

 

Every self-defense class I've ever taken taught that using deadly force with the intent to kill can get you charged with murder. You use deadly force only when necessary to stop an attack, and you stop when the attack has been neutralized.

That applies equally to firearms, edged weapons, and empty-hand disciplines.

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Response to slackmaster (Reply #9)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:12 PM

14. I disagree.

 

If a gunman kicks in your door and wants to kill your family, you better be shooting with the "intent to kill." ... you better be ready to use "deadly force" ... Whatever self defense class you took should refund your money.

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:14 PM

15. I have consistently been taught to aim for center of mass and continue firing until the attack stops

 

Or with an edged weapon, to direct force at whatever body part is a threat and keep slashing or stabbing until the attack stops.

If the person happens to die, that is an unfortunate consequence of his or her decision to attack.

When you are being interviewed by the police, you tell them you are sorry you had to use force but had no choice.

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:21 PM

18. Welcome to DU , and good luck in court with that Nt

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:38 PM

24. The finish them off part was murder!

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:59 PM

27. So if some unarmed teenagers come into your house...

You not only shoot both of them multiple times, but then drag the girl off to the other room and blow her brains out to finish her off? Sounds a little excessive to me.

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Response to Mangoman (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 06:05 PM

29. If a gunman kicks in your door, maybe. If two teenagers wander down into your basement...

maybe not. I am especially thinking that shooting them in the head once they are down and then waiting 24 hours before you call the police might just throw your actions into a dubious light.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 05:31 PM

22. Well, the dead aren't going to get any deader. But turkey day

is once a year. That was thoughtful of him.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #22)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 07:53 PM

43. I guess he wanted to watch the Lions piss away another game with the rest of America...

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 06:47 PM

31. Just my impression

Seems to me the gunners here are using this story to promote their reasons for having guns and what they would do to the bad guys, just as they do with every shooting story on DU. Not even a hint of a thought about the fact that this is a very sad tragedy.

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Response to upaloopa (Reply #31)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 01:48 AM

38. Seems to me that a certain grabber

has not actually been reading this thread. There are far more posts saying how outrageous this man's actions were than those saying what he did was ok.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 07:53 PM

33. How do we even know that anything this guy tells is the truth?

Were they breaking into his house? He obviously didn't report it right away. He also claims the girl laughed at him after he already shot at her? How likely is that?

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:34 PM

36. This story is so sad, all the way around.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 04:35 AM

39. The unofficial MN state motto of "I don't want to be any trouble"

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 05:08 AM

42. This went beyond defending his home with the "finishing shots"---

he did outright execution of these kids.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 07:54 PM

44. Little Falls teen shooting deaths called 'cold-blooded’

LITTLE FALLS, MINN. - Insisting the case crosses the line from self-defense to a cold-blooded double execution, Morrison County authorities filed second-degree murder charges Monday against a 64-year-old man who killed two teenage cousins after they'd broken into his home on Thanksgiving.

This woodsy central Minnesota town of 8,000 was jolted as the gruesome details spilled out in a criminal complaint, alleging Byron David Smith put a handgun under the chin of wounded and gasping 18-year-old Haile Kifer for what he told police was a "good clean finishing shot."

Smith, who according to a friend and a relative had endured previous break-ins, sat shackled in an orange jail jumpsuit as County Attorney Brian Middendorf accused him of "cold-blooded murder of two teenagers under circumstances that are appalling and far beyond any self-defense claim."

Sheriff Michel Wetzel said Monday that he believes the teenagers were committing a burglary but said Smith's reaction went beyond legal protections of Minnesota law that allows crime victims to use reasonable force to protect themselves and their property during a felony.

"We understand and respect that right exists, but what happened in this case went further," Wetzel said. "The law doesn't permit you to execute somebody when there's no possible way the crime can continue."

http://www.startribune.com/local/180853761.html?page=all&prepage=1&c=y&refer=y

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #44)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 07:59 PM

45. Ugh.

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Response to jsr (Original post)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 08:31 PM

46. Seems like a clear case of murder to me.

I have no objection to the initial use of deadly force in this or any other case of a home invasion. But to continue to use deadly force once the potential threat is clearly no longer present is not only a criminal act, it is (in my view) a profoundly unethical one.

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Response to Lizzie Poppet (Reply #46)

Tue Apr 22, 2014, 07:06 PM

47. I am resurrecting this post. Any one following the case?

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