Trial underway for manslaughter of Greenbrier county man - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

LATEST: Victim's father speaks at Antonio Smith manslaughter sentencing

Posted: Updated:
Antonio Smith found guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter, a lesser charge. Antonio Smith found guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter, a lesser charge.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Group fights against gas companies over pipeline in Pocahontas County

    Group fights against gas companies over pipeline in Pocahontas County

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 8:35 PM EDT2014-08-20 00:35:53 GMT
    The West Virginia Wilderness group has been fighting three gas companies for months, who want to put a pipeline in Pocahontas County .Lauren Ragland is the founder of West Virginia Wilderness and said the pipeline does not belong in Pocahontas County.
    The West Virginia Wilderness group has been fighting three gas companies for months, who want to put a pipeline in Pocahontas County .Lauren Ragland is the founder of West Virginia Wilderness and said the pipeline does not belong in Pocahontas County.
  • Chafin Wins, Elected 21st Republican Senator

    Chafin Wins, Elected 21st Republican Senator

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 8:03 PM EDT2014-08-20 00:03:34 GMT
    Delegate A. Benton "Ben" Chafin was elected to the Senate of Virginia, Tuesday. Chafin secured a Republican majority in the General Assembly upper chamber. Chafin will serve and represent the 38th District, succeeding former Senator Phil Puckett who resigned in June. Chafin defeated Democrat Mike Hymes and Independent Rick Mullins. Polls closed at 7 PM on Tuesday night.
    Delegate A. Benton "Ben" Chafin was elected to the Senate of Virginia, Tuesday. Chafin secured a Republican majority in the General Assembly upper chamber. Chafin will serve and represent the 38th District, succeeding former Senator Phil Puckett who resigned in June. Chafin defeated Democrat Mike Hymes and Independent Rick Mullins. Polls closed at 7 PM on Tuesday night.
  • ARMED AND DANGEROUS: Beckley Police search for suspect in weekend pharmacy robbery

    ARMED AND DANGEROUS: Beckley Police search for suspect in weekend pharmacy robbery

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 7:05 PM EDT2014-08-19 23:05:49 GMT
    A man who held a CVS employee at knife point on Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014 is the subject of a search by police officers. The man came into the CVS at the corner of Eisenhower Dr. and Ragland Rd. at 1:15 p.m. on Sunday.
    A man who held a CVS employee at knife point on Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014 is the subject of a search by police officers. The man came into the CVS at the corner of Eisenhower Dr. and Ragland Rd. at 1:15 p.m. on Sunday.

UDPATE:

Antonio Smith was in a Greenbrier County courtroom on Wednesday, April 9 to be sentenced for involuntary manslaughter.  Smith was found guilty after a trial in January, but did not show up for his sentencing on March 25.

Smith was sentenced to one year of confinement which will be served at the Southwestern Regional Jail.  59News spoke with the victim's father Ron Harris at the sentencing.  Watch for his reaction on the air tonight.

 


UPDATE:

The man convicted of killing Ira Harris was expected to show up to be sentenced in a Greenbrier County courtroom on Tuesday, March 25.  However, according to the prosecuting attorney's office, Antonio Smith did not show up for his hearing.

Smith was convicted of involuntary manslaughter during a trial in January.  A new sentencing can not be set until Smith is found.  According to the prosecuting attorney's office, Smith may have to be brought back to West Virginia from out of state.

(Click Here to read the West Virginia Code on Involuntary Manslaughter)

Involuntary Manslaughter is a misdemeanor according to the West Virginia Code. Penalties include up to one year in jail and no more than a $1,000 fine.

 


UDPATE:

 

Closing arguments were made in the trial of Antonio Smith at 9 a.m. in Lewisburg.  He was accused of killing Ira Harris, by pushing him down a flight of steps.

The jury received the case on Friday morning and quickly returned a verdict.  They found Smith guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter.  That is a lesser charge.  Smith was tried for Voluntary Manslaughter.

Sentencing will be held on a future date.


ORIGINAL STORY:

Nearly all of Lewisburg gathered at the court house Thursday to watch as Antonio Smith sat quietly before a jury of twelve people. It was the first day in his manslaughter trail.

Smith is accused of allegedly killing Ira Harris after he pushed him down a flight of stairs outside a down Lewisburg apartment on Washington street.

According to the criminal complaint, Smith and Harris got into a verbal argument late one Saturday and things escalated from there. Eye witnesses say Harris tried to walk away,  but Smith pushed him from behind. Lewisburg police found Harris laying in the street bleeding from a massive head injury. He later died from his injuries in a Charleston hospital.

Harris worked at the Greenbrier and was active with the Greenbrier Valley Theater. Those who knew him say he was an energetic young man, full of life.