Details released in soldier stabbing case

October 7, 2008 5:14:06 PM PDT
Court documents allege Sergeant Richard Smith asked several people to kill his wife.According to documents, an unnamed person came forward and helped police crack the case.

The paperwork details a murder for hire --a husband who offered $30,000 to a co-worker to kill his wife. What the documents do not detail, is why.

Police investigators say 26-year-old Smith told them he was joking when he asked several people to murder his wife.

Christina Smith, 29, was stabbed to death September 30, as the couple walked near their north Fayetteville home.

Newly released affidavits show that initially Smith told investigators he couldn't recognize his wife's attacker, but police say they were suspicious almost from the start.

In court papers obtained by Eyewitness News, Detective Jeff Locklear says Smith's answers to questions sounded robotic.

Smith told investigators the day of the murder he and fellow soldier, 18-year-old Matthew Wayne Kvapil, bought camping supplies, including a knife.

Later when investigators confronted Smith about trying to hire others to kill his wife, they say Smith admitted he and Kvapil plotted the murder. Both men are being held on murder and conspiracy charges.

In his statement to police, Kvapil says Smith told him to hide in bushes near the couple's home. When they walked by he says Smith told him to "stab Christina in the neck and that is she was not dead to cut her throat."

Smith told investigators he stood back and watched as his wife struggled with Kvapil. When she fell to the ground Kvapil ran off.

Kvapil led investigators to a stream where they recovered the murder weapon and black clothing.

He told investigators smith asked him twice, and then offered him $30,000 to kill someone.

Kvapil says when he realized it was Christina he tried to back out of the deal, but says Smith threatened to put a contract out on him. He also told investigators that Smith also told him, "murder for hire could be profitable."

Smith and Kvapil made their first court appearances Monday afternoon. They are charged with murder and conspiracy. The two soldiers have been jailed without bond since their arrest early Friday morning.

Both soldiers asked for and were assigned a court appointed attorney. They were ordered held without bond. Their next court hearing appearance is scheduled for October 23.


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