Skip to main content

Byron Smith must pay restitution to victims' families


Byron Smith, who was convicted in the spring of killing two unarmed teenagers who broke into his Little Falls home, has been ordered to pay their families $21,000 in restitution, the Associated Press reports.

Smith, 66, is serving a life sentence in prison for fatally shooting Nicholas Brady, 17, and Haile Kifer, 18, on Thanksgiving Day 2012 after they broke into his house.

A Morrison County judge ruled Tuesday that Smith must pay more than $9,570 to Brady’s family and more than $11,840 to Kifer’s family, according to the Associated Press.

The families had asked for $42,000 in restitution to cover expenses such as funeral costs and mileage to and from court hearings, the Star Tribune reports.

Smith contested the original amount requested. At an August court hearing on the subject, he argued that because Brady stole items from his home previously, he shouldn’t have to pay restitution to Brady’s family. He also challenged the restitution he was ordered to pay to Kifer’s family.

Smith's trial brought to the forefront a debate over how far a homeowner can go to protect himself from intruders.

Prosecutors conceded the teenagers broke into Smith’s house on that day, but they successfully argued that Smith crossed a line when he continued to shoot the unarmed teens – even after they had been injured.

They also pointed out that Smith planned the killings and was in his basement lying in wait for the teenagers with two loaded guns.

Smith's attorneys contended that Smith was hiding in the basement because he feared for his life after a series of burglaries at his home, including one in which guns were stolen.

Smith is appealing his conviction.

Next Up

Tony Oliva

Tony Oliva and Jim Kaat are finally heading to Cooperstown

The Twins legends were elected to Baseball's Hall of Fame on Sunday night.

Tanner Morgan

Report: Gophers to play in Guaranteed Rate Bowl

The Gophers will reportedly head to Phoenix to take on West Virginia.

Adam Thielen

Winless Lions beat Vikings on final play of game

Adam Thielen also left early with an ankle injury

Payton Willis / Gopher Basketball

Gophers improve to 7-0 on Willis' late 3-pointer

The Gophers earned back-to-back road victories for the first time since January 2017.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Woman in critical condition after being shot in the head in St. Paul

Officers responded to the incident at around 2:45 a.m. Saturday.

Alexander Mattison

Vikings-Lions: 5 things you can count on

It's a great time for the Vikings to play the Lions.


Omicron variant confirmed in Wisconsin man who traveled to South Africa

Five other cases have been confirmed and linked to a Wisconsin wedding.

Sharon Mollerus - duluth - snow plow car

Sunday snowstorm walloping MN's North Shore with huge totals

Just ridiculous snow totals expected the rest of Sunday.

Screen Shot 2021-12-05 at 6.49.03 AM

Saturday snow causes havoc on Twin Cities roads

There were countless spinouts and crashes across Minnesota.

Kirill Kaprizov

Wild win battle of NHL's hottest teams, extend winning streak to six

Kirill Kaprizov delivered a shootout winner to take down the Maple Leafs.