SC - Stephen Smith, 19, homicide, Hampton Co, 9 Jul 2015 *new death investigation 2023*

Wallendo

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I doubt there was any cover-up involving the autopsy. The main point of contention is that the pathologist did not interpret the manner of death in a way the coroner wanted. It is up to the coroner to make that determination. It seems as if local LE and the coroner did not want to be responsible for the determination but were hoping to offload that determination to the pathologist who didn't want to get dragged into local Hampton County politics.

It will be interesting to see what happens with the repeat autopsy. In light of current publicity, it will likely be labelled as homicide, but I doubt the objective physical findings will be different.
 

lonetraveler

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37 min video w/Chanley Painter in the low country.
I'm very curious as to what prompted the rape kit. Was there physical evidence that he had been assaulted? It's odd that the results are documented or maybe the results were destroyed. JMO
 

Twistinginthewind

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I wonder where he was coming from (where the campus was where he attended class) in relation to Stephen's home, and if it makes sense where his car was found, e.g., on a route coming from the campus and pointed in the direction of home. Somewhere I thought I saw some discussion of this and it implied his car wasn't where it would be expected to be if he was coming straight home from class. IMO
 

otto

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I wonder where he was coming from (where the campus was where he attended class) in relation to Stephen's home, and if it makes sense where his car was found, e.g., on a route coming from the campus and pointed in the direction of home. Somewhere I thought I saw some discussion of this and it implied his car wasn't where it would be expected to be if he was coming straight home from class. IMO
Calhoun Tech College is where he had his evening class. His home is the red dot. His car and body were on the way home from the college.

Map
 

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Twistinginthewind

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Calhoun Tech College is where he had his evening class. His home is the red dot. His car and body were on the way home from the college.

Map
Thank you, Otto. These are very helpful, and now they look familiar, so thanks for posting them again if you already had. Moselle is nearby his route home, so I can't get it out of my head that he met with a Murdaugh on his way home, rumours sometimes having a basis in reality and all. jmo
 

otto

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Thank you, Otto. These are very helpful, and now they look familiar, so thanks for posting them again if you already had. Moselle is nearby his route home, so I can't get it out of my head that he met with a Murdaugh on his way home, rumours sometimes having a basis in reality and all. jmo
That's the big question. From reading various articles, I understand that Buster was not at Moselle that day. Whether that's true, who knows. Phone records would confirm his location.

Stephen's timeline doesn't work. Evening classes are usually finished no later than 10 PM, and it is roughly a one hour drive home. I have seen too many conflicting times to know what time his body was discovered, but it seems to be at least 6 hours later. He wasn't on the road the entire time, so where did he go after class? What happened between class and body on the road?

It's possible that he was targeted and that was the night that a murder was planned. For example, Alex had police lights on his vehicle and he carried a badge. He could easily have pulled Stephen over on the road between Moselle and Stephen's home. Cousin Eddie and other drug related friends of Alex might be involved.

It's possible that Alex knew about Buster's friendship with Stephen, that he did not approve and so he ended it.

Perhaps Paul or someone else invited Stephen to Moselle that night. We need to know more about what investigators discovered at Moselle in relation to Stephen's murder.
 

Seattle1

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I'm very curious as to what prompted the rape kit. Was there physical evidence that he had been assaulted? It's odd that the results are documented or maybe the results were destroyed. JMO
Unfortunately, this case goes back to 2015 and so much old vs new information is being floated.

Reportedly, the rape kit was ordered, as was standard, during the 2015 homicide investigation. However, the kit was never processed/tested after thoughts turned to auto accident/hit and run.

Eric Bland, the attorney representing the Smith family, confirmed to PEOPLE that a rape kit was performed, but was not tested.

 

Twistinginthewind

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Stephen Smith Crime Scene Photos and 911 Call Under Renewed Scrutiny​

Newsweek 3/29/2023
Story by Gerrard Kaonga

"The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) told the Smith family attorney, Eric Bland, that an unidentified "piece of evidence" related to Smith's death was uncovered during the state investigation into the Murdaugh murders."

Stephen Smith Crime Scene Photos and 911 Call Under Renewed Scrutiny
 

Katrinepa

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I'm glad to hear his family's lawyer address this as a possible hate crime:

"Lawyer Believes Stephen Smith's Killing Was Hate Crime

Now that Stephen Smith's mysterious 2015 death has officially been ruled a homicide, his family's lawyer is speaking out on what he believes may have led to the 19-year-old's killing.

While speaking with PEOPLE, Eric Bland, the attorney representing the Smith family, said he believes Smith's death seems like a hate crime."


Lawyer Believes Stephen Smith's Killing Was Hate Crime: 'Hey, We're Going to Beat Up a Gay Kid'
What's horrible is that South Carolina has No Hate Crime Laws. Grrr!! www.newsweek.com/states-that-dont-have-any-hate-crime-laws-1456207
 

Simply Southern

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sunshineray

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And dos anyone want to take odds on whether Buster will try to "take a vacation" somewhere far far away before he is implicated?
If you read SS case files that were released there's another who I'm sure SLED is looking into also.

The pathologist is very concerning, her attitude about putting down what she did and then when confronted willing to just change it to whatever they wanted. Very odd. AJMO
 

Elliot_Alderson

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If you read SS case files that were released there's another who I'm sure SLED is looking into also.

The pathologist is very concerning, her attitude about putting down what she did and then when confronted willing to just change it to whatever they wanted. Very odd. AJMO

Do you have a link to the docs?
 

girlhasnoname

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I doubt there was any cover-up involving the autopsy. The main point of contention is that the pathologist did not interpret the manner of death in a way the coroner wanted. It is up to the coroner to make that determination. It seems as if local LE and the coroner did not want to be responsible for the determination but were hoping to offload that determination to the pathologist who didn't want to get dragged into local Hampton County politics.

It will be interesting to see what happens with the repeat autopsy. In light of current publicity, it will likely be labelled as homicide, but I doubt the objective physical findings will be different.
I would usually agree with you about the autopsy coverup, but after seeing that Gloria Satterfields was listed as death by natural causes, I don't trust a thing coming out of Hampton County when it's related to the Murdaughs somehow.

MOO
 

girlhasnoname

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Is that his left arm in the photo? His right arm is up and to the right? It's hard to understand since it is blurred. However, trying to understand what happened here. What was used to hit him in the head? That seems to be the fatal injury.

I'm starting to wonder why it was ever determined to be a vehicle accident.

Graphic Photo
And his shoes are still on and intact, which is unusual after being struck by a vehicle. I don't know, this is looking more than questionable to me.

MOO
 
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