Reckless Fresno shooting leads to murder charge

The suspect in a man's death has been charged with murder, even though authorities say the shooting may have been an accident.
April 21, 2014 12:00:00 AM PDT
Gerald Perry lived in North Fresno with his wife. The 65-year-old was visiting his granddaughter at her apartment on Friday, when a carelessly-fired bullet came out of nowhere and hit him in the head.

The man charged in his death is Lemont Smith. He is 30 years old. Smith may not have intended to hurt anyone but Lt. Mark Salazar of the Fresno Police Department says Smith's careless act amounts to murder.

"He had a gun, he was reckless with it, pointed it toward the direction of the apartment where our victim was at, it went off, and the victim was struck in the head and died the next day," said Salazar.

Did he intentionally pull the trigger or was it apparently an accident?

"It could have been an accident but again it was reckless, so reckless that a 65-year-old victim just went to a relative's house, his granddaughter's apartment, was there watching TV when that happened," said Salazar.

Police say the shot was fired from another apartment in the complex, but the manager told us Smith did not live there.

In addition to murder charges, he's facing charges of being a convicted felon and drug abuser illegally in possession of a gun.

"This person who had the gun had no business having a gun," said Salazar.

Lemont Smith is currently in the Fresno County Jail. Police say he has an extremely long criminal record. He is expected to be arraigned in court on murder charges this week.


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