The Little Falls homeowner found guilty of killing two teenagers who broke into his home is appealing the state Supreme Court decision that upheld his conviction.
Byron Smith’s lawyers argue that his constitutional rights were violated when part of his trial was closed to the public. The Minnesota Supreme Court rejected that argument and others on appeal.
A federal judge refused to overturn the state’s Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month but did issue a certificate of appealability. – which is issued only when the appellant has made a, “Substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right.”
Smith was convicted in 2014 of first-degree premeditated murder in the shootings of 18-year-old Haile Kifer and her 17-year-old cousin, Nick Brady and was sentenced to life without parole.
Byron Smith’s attorneys filed his appeal in the Eighth Circuit.