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Smith won't testify in own defense

Smith won't testify in own defense Click to Enlarge Photo: Stockbyte, Photos.com

Apr 28, 2014 at 10:56 am

LITTLE FALLS,, Minn. (AP) A Minnesota man charged with fatally shooting two teenagers who broke into his home has waived his right to testify at his trial in Morrison County.

Byron Smith told Judge Douglas Anderson that he had discussed the matter with his lawyer and opted not to take the stand.

The 65-year-old Little Falls man is on trial for first-degree premeditated murder. Smith claims he was defending himself and feared for his life after several break-ins.

The jury on Monday heard from Smith's brother, Bruce Smith, and two of the defendant's neighbors, 16-year-old Dylan Lange, and his mother, Kathleen Lange. They all testified that they know Smith to be an honest man.

Byron Smith has lived with the Lange family since the fatal shooting on Thanksgiving Day 2012.

Mike Tanner

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