Slain man's nephew back in ETX to face murder charge

Slain man's nephew back in ETX to face murder charge

(KSLA) - A man accused of fatally shooting his uncle faces his first court hearing Friday in East Texas.

Marion County, Texas, Sheriff David McKnight said 50-year-old Joe Earl Smith, of Jefferson, Texas, arrived from Florida on Thursday.

He will appear Friday before a justice of the peace to be arraigned on a murder charge and to have his bond set.

The case does not qualify for the charge of capital murder, the sheriff said.

Meantime, Smith is being held in the Marion County Jail.

Diane Walker, the slain man's stepdaughter, previously said 68-year-old Jack Smith was shot multiple times late the morning of Feb. 22 while working on his family's property in the 1700 block of U.S. Highway 59, also known as North Walcott Street.

Witnesses said the dispute originated over land ownership and possible heirship of the land where the shooting happened, according to a statement earlier released by McKnight, . 

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