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Press Release

Fort Mojave Man Sentenced To 35 Years In Prison For Second-degree Murder, Child Abuse, And Assault

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Arizona

                 PHOENIX – On Jan. 27, 2014, Matthew Smith, 31, of Mohave Valley, Ariz., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Paul G. Rosenblatt to 35 years in federal prison followed by five years of supervised release.  The Court also ordered Smith to pay $250,193 in restitution.  Smith pleaded guilty on Aug. 15, 2013, to second-degree murder, child abuse, and assault resulting in serious bodily injury.

                 Between July 8, 2012 and July 11, 2012 on the Fort Mojave Indian reservation, Smith punched his step-child in the abdomen and assaulted the child multiple times.  The child died due to multiple blunt force traumas and other injuries.  During the same period of time, Smith also assaulted another of his step-children and left the child for approximately two days without food or water.  The second child was hospitalized for a significant period of time and survived, but sustained serious permanent injuries.  In investigating the death and assault to Smith’s two step-children, law enforcement officers observed that another of Smith’s children had a visibly distorted arm.  Investigators determined that, during the same July time period as the homicide and assault, Smith had assaulted this third child, who suffered a broken arm. 

The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Fort Mojave Police Department. The prosecution was handled by Jennifer E. Green and Sharon K. Sexton, Assistant U.S. Attorneys, District of Arizona, Phoenix.

CASE NUMBER:           CR-12-8195-PCT-PGR
RELEASE NUMBER:   2014-006_Smith

For more information on the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona, visit

Updated January 7, 2015