Coalition, community rally around incarcerated Millbrook man

Published: Sep. 24, 2022 at 7:06 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - It’s been seven years since LaKeith Smith was sentenced to 65 years for a murder his attorney and family say he did not commit.

Smith and A’Donte Washington were involved in a burglary in a Millbrook neighborhood when Millbrook Police shot and killed Washington, but Smith was held responsible for the death under the Alabama Felony Murder Statute.

“LaKeith, under the felony murder statutem received a murder conviction and was sentenced to 65 years,” said Represent Justice CEO Daniel Forkkio.

Forkkio and others believe the statute is too harsh for someone who committed nonviolent crimes.

“We have a very racist and classist justice system,” said Voices Behind Bars Founder Sarah Dearmond. “Wrongful convictions are very common and that’s something that the public does not know about, and they need to be aware of.”

The “Justice for Lakeith Smith” Coalition believes by bringing awareness to the incarcerated man’s story, the community could rally together and use their voice to bring him home.

“What’s in it for us is that we get to live up to the moral code that we talk about and espouse,” Forkkio said. “All the values that we say we are as a country and as a community - we get to really live those values if we are bringing people home who we know should be home with their families.”

Smith is set to appear in a “Rule 32″ hearing on Dec. 2.

If you are interested in learning more about Smith’s story or helping raise awareness, click here.

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