Little Falls reeling; joint funeral for shooting victims is Saturday

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A joint funeral is set for Saturday in Little Falls for two teenage cousins who were killed in a Thanksgiving Day shooting. Byron Smith is charged with murdering 18-year-old Haile Kifer and 17-year-old Nick Brady after they apparently broke into his home.

The case has sparked discussions about the rights of homeowners to protect themselves from intruders ... and where those rights end and lawlessness begins. The nationwide attention to the case, though, has only added to the ordeal for residents of Little Falls, one of whom tells Fox 9 the case has consumed the town.


The school superintendent tells the St. Cloud Times students are in a state of shock and many of them visited with counselors on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, more details are coming to light. Smith reported a burglary last month in which money, guns, and other valuables were stolen. He also told authorities then that there had been two previous break-ins. And the State Department confirmed that the 64-year-old Smith is a retired security engineer who last worked for the agency in 2006.

On Monday prosecutors argued Smith's global travels through his government work made him a flight risk. A judge set bail at $2 million as Smith was charged with second-degree murder.

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