Prosecutors in North Carolina are pursuing the death penalty for a mother accused of brutally killing her 5-year-old adopted child last year.
Appears in Forsyth County Superior Court on Friday, Assistant District Attorney Belinda Foster declare that the state wishes to bring a capital lawsuit against Kimberly Monique Smith due to the “particularly heinous” nature of her alleged crimes, Winston-Salem magazine report.
Equal previous report under Law & Crime, a grand jury in October 2021 indicted Smith on felony counts, including first-degree murder, in the death of his adopted son in June 2021, Kendall Marquise Smith. Smith is also charged with knowingly child abuse causing serious bodily harm, also a felony, for allegedly abusing her 6-year-old son, Kendall’s brother.
According to Winston-Salem magazine reported, ADA Foster told Superior Court Judge Forsyth Andrew Hanford that the charges against Smith were “particularly heinous, barbaric or heinous”, one of 11 aggravating circumstances that forced prosecutors to seek the death penalty under North Carolina law.
Judge Hanford is said to have agreed to ADA Foster’s request and formally ordered that the case against Smith be due process. Under state law regarding capital cases, Judge Hanford also ordered that Smith be appointed a second court-appointed attorney. She is currently represented by the Forsyth County Public Defender Paul James.
James did not immediately respond to a message from Law & Crime seeking comment on the state’s decision to seek the death penalty against his client.
Winston-Salem Police Department and Emergency Medical Services personnel at around 9:53 a.m. on June 6 responded to a 911 call about an unresponsive child at a home on the Street. Whisperwood in Rural Hall, authorities said in a statement Press Release. Upon arrival at the scene, first responders discovered one of Smith’s friends giving an unresponsive Kendall CPR and performed life-saving procedures. EMS personnel transported Kendall to Brenner Children’s Hospital, where doctors attempted to resuscitate the child, but were unable to combat his injuries shortly after arrival and were pronounced dead. around that evening.
An affidavit of probable cause due to Winston-Salem magazine According to the report, an officer who accompanied Kendall to the hospital observed that the boy had “many bruises all over his body” as well as “scratches on the tip of his penis and a laceration on his scrotum.”
When asked about Kendall’s trauma, Kimberly’s stories of what happened changed several times. According to the affidavit, she initially told investigators she was holding Kendall when she tripped over her other child and dropped it on her head. Two days later, she allegedly declared nothing to do with Kendall’s injuries, reporting to police that her son was just “clumsy” and fell while running.
But Kendall’s brother told a social worker he saw his mother hit Kendall, first with a wooden stick, then with the cord of a phone charger and finally with a belt. The brother also recounted that his mother often “stroking his and Kendall’s genitals” as punishment for wetting the bed.
A subsequent autopsy performed by a pathologist determined that Kendall’s death was a homicide that caused severe trauma to the back of his head. The blow is said to have caused the boy’s brain to swell, leaving him starved of oxygen. Pathologists also said they found unique bruises on Kendall’s body that police said matched a belt recovered from inside Kimberly Smith’s home.
Investigators analyzed the face covering recovered from the scene and determined that the bandage was placed over the child’s mouth and wrapped around the child’s head and neck twice to hold the child’s mouth, according to the affidavit.
Faced with additional evidence, Smith later admitted that she “glued Kendall’s mouth shut to keep him from screaming and she hit him with a measuring tape and charging cord,” according to the affidavit. She also said she made the boy run a “suicide drill” in her room as punishment for drinking after 5pm. She said she placed the boy in the tub for about 30 minutes and tried to wake him up before calling her friends over. The friend called 911.
sublieutenant Gregory Dorn of the Winston-Salem Police Department told WBTW-TV, the Florence CBS affiliate of which Kimberly has been the legal guardian of the children for about two years, and described the investigation as “the worst case of abuse he has seen in 16 years”.
Smith, who had been the legal guardian of the children for about two years before Kendall’s death, was currently being held at the Forsyth County Jail without bond.
The Forsyth County District Attorney’s Office and the Clerk of the Court did not immediately respond to messages from Law & Crime seeking additional information in this case.
[image via Winston-Salem Police]
Is there a trick we should know? [email protected]
https://lawandcrime.com/crime/prosecutors-seek-death-penalty-against-n-c-mom-accused-of-killing-5-year-old-in-what-police-officer-called-worst-case-of-abuse-hes-seen-in-16-years/ Prosecutors seek death penalty for Kimberly Monique Smith