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Press Release

Trice Indicted For Kidnapping Resulting In Death And Kidnapping A Minor In Wynter Cole-Smith Case

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

          GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN — U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan Mark Totten today announced the indictment of Rashad Maleek Trice, 26, for kidnapping two-year-old Wynter Cole-Smith, resulting in her death and kidnapping a minor. While Trice was charged by criminal complaint on July 7, 2023, to secure his immediate detention, today’s action satisfies the defendant’s constitutional right to federal indictment by a grand jury.           

          “This indictment marks another step forward as we seek a measure of justice following the heartbreaking loss of Wynter Cole-Smith,” said U.S. Attorney Mark Totten. “My thoughts are deeply with Wynter’s family, and my office is fully prepared to make our case against Mr. Trice at a fair trial.”

          Trice is charged with two counts.  The first count is kidnapping resulting in death, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1201(a)(1).  If convicted, the statutory mandatory minimum sentence is life in prison. This offense is also death penalty eligible. The second count is kidnapping of a minor, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1201(a)(1) and (g)(1).  If convicted, the statutory mandatory minimum sentence is 20 years in prison with a maximum possible sentence of life in prison. 

          "There is no greater responsibility for the FBI than to investigate those who commit senseless acts of violence against young children,” said Devin J. Kowalski, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Detroit Field Office. “While today’s indictment cannot erase the pain her family is experiencing, it is the next step in the process of securing justice for Wynter.”

          Arraignment and an initial pretrial conference on these charges is scheduled for Monday, August 7, 2023, at 11 a.m. before Magistrate Judge Ray Kent. U.S. Attorney Totten and FBI SAC Devin Kowalski is scheduled to attend the arraignment and will offer brief comments immediately following.

          The charges in an indictment are merely accusations, and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law.


Updated July 26, 2023

Violent Crime