Teen accused in child murder denied youthful offender status

UPDATE: Thursday, March 27: Baldwin County Circuit Judge Jody Bishop denied youthful offender status to Christopher Smith.

Wednesday, March 26: A Fairhope teen accused of shooting two children, one of whom died, is expected in court Thursday, March 27 for a youthful offender status hearing.

Christopher Smith, 19, faces five charges including murder and reckless endangerment in the April 2012 death of 5-year-old Teela Murphy.

Investigators said a then 17-year-old Smith was watching Teela and her younger half-brother playing in the yard, about 90 yards away when it happened.

Authorities said Smith was handling a hunting rifle and admittedly aimed the weapon at the children using the scope. At some point officials say a single bullet discharged, striking Teela and her half-brother, Jayden Smith who survived.

Investigators said Smith then hid the weapon in a closet before police arrived.

While some family members believe it was an accident, Teela’s father and grandmother plan to attend tomorrow’s hearing with a group to show that they want justice served.

“We’re still waiting. Most people – a lot of people think we’ve gone to trial already,” said Teela’s grandmother, Luci Murphy. “We haven’t.”

“I want to get to a better place where I don’t feel all those negative emotions but right now I just haven’t had enough time,” said Teela’s father, Tray Murphy. “I haven’t seen anything happen to him. I haven’t seen any kind of real remorse.”

Smith’s attorney told FOX10 News shortly after his arrest that the teen didn’t didn’t pull the trigger and instead insists the gun went off.

Meanwhile, officials said Teela’s mother has stood behind Smith and believes it was an accident as well.

The Baldwin County District Attorneys Office said they want Smith to face adult charges and don’t buy his story.

FOX10 News will be at Thursday’s hearing and will let you know what happens.

blog comments powered by Disqus