Byron Smith breaks down in court during restitution appeal


Convicted murderer Byron Smith was in court Tuesday to contest the amount of restitution prosecutors are asking him to pay for the deaths of the two teenagers he shot after they broke into his home.

In April, Smith was convicted in the deaths of cousins 18-year-old Haile Kifer and 17-year-old Nicholas Brady, whom he shot after they broke into his Little Falls area home on Thanksgiving Day 2012. He was sentenced to mandatory life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Smith, who didn't take the stand in his murder trial, broke down in tears as he testified Tuesday about how much he loved the home his family had built and a series of burglaries at that home, which have been linked to Brady, the Star Tribune reports.

Smith is arguing that because Brady stole items from his home previously, he shouldn't have to pay restitution to Brady's family. He's also contesting the restitution he was ordered to pay to Kifer's family.

St. Cloud Times reporter David Unze tweeted that the restitution amount is about $42,000 and Smith claims his losses in burglaries are worth about $53,000.

Brady's friend, Cody Kasper, 18, also testified Tuesday telling the court he helped Brady steal items from Smith's home three different times, which included enough cash for Brady to buy a used car, a four wheeler, and enough to take Kasper on a shopping spree, KARE 11 says.

Smith's attorneys have two weeks to file written arguments in the restitution appeal. Each side will have until November to respond to those arguments, KARE 11 says.

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