Thursday, July 22, 1999

Daughter wanted in homicide

Father's throat was slashed

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MILFORD — Until police arrived Tuesday to investigate his death, 88-year-old Orris Smith and his daughter never disrupted the Chateau Place apartment building where they had lived for more than a year, neighbors said.

        Those neighbors were shocked to learn Wednesday that Sherrie Smith, 53, was hospitalized and wanted in her father's slaying.

        “Never — they never caused any problems,” said Charles Weglarski, who lives next door.

        “I only saw him once, when they moved in. ... If I saw her two dozen times since, that's a lot. I'd just say hi.”

        Mr. Smith's body was discovered at 1:15 p.m. Tuesday, when his son arrived at the apartment and called police.

        Ruling the death a homicide, Clermont County Coroner Nico Capurro said the man's throat had been slit and he bled to death.

        Authorities think Mr. Smith died at least 10 hours — and perhaps as much as five days — before they arrived at the home.

        Ms. Smith had been taking care of her father for some time, most recently in the second-floor apartment they shared.

        “These two had apparently lived together for several years,” said Darrell Hawkins, assistant prosecuting attorney and coroner's investigator.

        A murder warrant was issued for Ms. Smith, and she will be arrested upon her release from an area hospital, he said, refusing to name the institution.

        Ms. Smith had “very superficial” injuries related to the alleged crime, Mr. Hawkins said.

        “She's not being held (in the hospital) because of the injuries. She's being held because of an illness,” he said, but he would not elaborate.

        He said he didn't think Ms. Smith has a record of prior criminal activity.

        Milford police refused to comment on their investigation.


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