A jailed 17-year-old is scheduled to appear in court this week on murder charges that he suffocated his 5-year-old brother at the family’s home near Rochester.
Kaleb W. Smith, of Eyota, was charged in a juvenile petition filed last week with second-degree murder and domestic assault in connection the death of Alex Smith on June 1 at their home in Eyota.
Smith remains in custody ahead of a hearing Wednesday in Olmsted County District Court.
According to the charging document:
Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched about 4:40 p.m. for a medical emergency at the home in the 300 block of 2nd Street SW., where the boys’ mother said she had left the house briefly while her sons were there together.
Alex was taken by ambulance to a Rochester hospital and declared dead about 1 hours and 20 minutes later.
Kaleb Smith told deputies that he and his siblings had spent the past few days trying to nurse an injured bird back to health.
On June 1, some of the siblings told Kaleb Smith that Alex had killed the bird, sending the teen looking for the boy.
Kaleb Smith pulled Alex out from under their mothers’ bed and took the boy to her. She sent Alex to bed.
The teen went after the boy again within minutes, and found him “crying and throwing a fit,” the charges read. Kaleb Smith draped a blanket over Alex’s body and head before leaving the room, but the boy kept screaming.
The teen returned to Alex’s room and pinched his brother’s nose and covered his mouth for “one to two minutes” until the screaming stopped.
The Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office said Alex’s brain suffered swelling consistent with being deprived oxygen by smothering.