Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Defense Calls Police Work in Murder Case Shoddy.(Final)

Byline: Matt Joyce Journal Staff Writer

Oversights Alleged In Probe of Mom's Death

Lawyers for an Albuquerque man accused of killing his mother said Thursday the state's accusations are based on shoddy police work and unfounded conclusions.

In closing arguments of Michael Shane Smartt's murder trial, defense attorneys tried to pick holes in the state's charges that Smartt shot his mother, Delonna Crosby, and put the gun in her hand to stage a suicide.

"Why can't the state explain to you that there was a total disregard for collection of evidence at the scene?" defense attorney Michelle Warren said.

Jury members deliberated for two hours Thursday and will continue deliberating today on whether Smartt, 36, is innocent or guilty of first- or second-degree murder stemming from the June 2001 death of Crosby. …

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