State seeking to reverse earlier finding

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 28, 2013

By Kimberly Hopson

LAPLACE – The State of Louisiana filed to reverse the court’s no probable cause finding for Terry Smith, a central figure in last year’s deputy shooting case, on Wednesday, according to the writ application.
During a June hearing, the court determined that there was no probable cause to hold Smith on the charge of principal to attempted first-degree murder, in regard to son Brian Smith’s attempts to shoot Deputy Scott Boyington.
The writ application reads: “At the preliminary examination, the State was not required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that (the) defendant committed the crime with which he has been charged; rather, the State merely had to present prima facie evidence to justify a man of average caution in the belief that defendant committed the crime.”
The document said Terry Smith’s preliminary examination established that he was aware that his son was armed with a weapon and stated his intent to shoot Boyington. Further testimony established that Terry Smith drove alongside Boyington’s vehicle to provide Brian Smith with a clear shot. The writ goes on to detail previous testimonies given by Boyington and suspect Teniecha Bright, who had been seated in the car between the father and son during the incident.
According to the writ, Bright testified that Brian Smith pulled out an AK-47 gun, that was “always resting on the front seat,” then turned and made eye contact with his father and asked “Do you want me to take him out?” Bright said Brian Smith asked again, receiving no response. Brian Smith allegedly stated,
“I’m going to take him out,” despite receiving no reply.
The writ said Boyington testified that Terry Smith did not attempt to evade him as he pursued the truck. “Rather, (the) defendant slowed his vehicle down, and just when Deputy Boyington was close enough to effect a traffic stop, defendant would pull forward again at a slow pace.”
Boyington reportedly testified that these maneuvers went on several times before he decided to pass defendant and position his vehicle in front of defendant’s truck.
“At that point, defendant ‘shot around’ his police vehicle, at which time shots were fired out of the passenger side window as the truck passed him,” the writ read. The document said the testimony during the preliminary examination hearing also suggested that Terry Smith did not advise Brian Smith to put the gun down, did not advise him not to shoot, did not stop his vehicle despite repeated attempts by Boyington to pull him over, did not act surprised by the shooting and did not render aid to the officer after the shooting, but rather, he “just kept driving.”
More hearings regarding the case are scheduled for Oct. 9.