Guilty as charged: Smith convicted in brutal Cooper Road murder
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - A Shreveport man has been found guilty as charged in the brutal murder of another man outside a Cooper Road-area apartment complex last May.
Prentiss "Tyree" Britton, 21, was gunned down outside the Peach Tree Apartments in May 2013. Andrew Smith, who was 19 at the time, was charged with second degree murder in the killing.
During the 4-day trial in Caddo Parish, jurors heard testimony that Britton had just beaten Smith up for allegedly breaking in to his apartment. Prosecutors say Smith responded to that assault by going to his own apartment and returning with a semi-automatic weapon with a high-capacity magazine and opening fire on Britton.
Prosecutors showed the jury surveillance video of the violent confrontation. In the video, Smith can be seen trying to get to Britton as Britton circles around a car in a parking lot in an attempt to avoid him. Smith is then seen jumping on top of the car and unloading more than a dozen bullets directly at Britton, who was struck 16 times in all.
Smith is seen walking away before appearing to calmly come back and fire the final few fatal shots at close range as Britton appears to try to get up from the pavement. Britton was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
The weapon was never found.
Smith's defense attorney Kevin Berg didn't deny that his client is in the video, but told the jury to consider that Smith was reacting to the alleged attack, and did not have time to calm down. For that reason, Berg asked the jury to consider a lesser conviction of manslaughter.
The jury deliberated for just over 2 hours on Thursday, asking to see the video again before returning a guilty verdict on the charge of second degree murder.
Smith is set for a sentencing hearing in Caddo Parish court on Monday. He faces life in prison.
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