Dozens of family members leave weeping from Lakisha Young’s presentment

Dozens of emotional family members packed the courtroom Monday afternoon for murder suspect Lakisha Young’s first court appearence.

Young was presented Monday on charges of second-degree murder for allegedly fatally stabbing Alan Smith, which presiding Judge Renee Raymond called a “family tragedy.”

Young’s family members filled the courtroom’s pews to capacity, with many women leaving in tears when Raymond ordered Young held without bail on the charges. At one point during the proceedings, a man stood up and yelled that Young had “killed my father,” and expressed wishes for her to die in hell. The man was escorted out of the courtroom following the outburst.

During the presentment, Young’s attorney  David Maxted said she had acted in self-defense and requested that she be released. He also asked that if the court held Young without bail, that she be charged with involuntary manslaughter while armed instead of second-degree murder. ”

“It was in the heat of passion, it was not thought out or planned,” Maxted said.

The government said  Young had two assault charges in the past, including one involving a knife. They also argued that “there is no colorful evidence for self-defense” in this case. While summarizing the charging documents against Young, Raymond said a witness told police Young grabbed a knife and stabbed Smith while he was unarmed and pleading for her to stop.

“The witness clearly says Ms. Young was the aggressor,” Raymond said. Raymond kept the original charge at second-degree murder while armed. Young is being held without bail and will be seen next in her preliminary hearing on July 21.



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