Michael Smith bound over to adult court for shooting death of Hamilton teen, Shon Walker

Deputies called after families left Hamilton courtroom screaming, name-calling

Emotions ran high outside a Butler County courtroom today following a hearing for a Hamilton teenager charged with the shooting death of a 19-year-old in June.

Michael Smith Jr., 17, who is being tried as an adult, was indicted last month by a county grand jury for murder and tampering with evidence for allegedly shooting Shon Walker to death.

Walker, 19, was shot point-blank just after 9 p.m. on June 27 in the 400 block of East Avenue. Hamilton police say the teen had a firearm and shot Walker several times, then concealed the weapon in his clothing and put it in a sewer on High Street.

The incident was caught on video, and a witness identified the teen as the “shooter,” according to court documents.

Because of the seriousness of the crime and Smith’s age, the case was a mandatory bind-over to adult court if probable cause was found by county Juvenile Court Judge Ronald Craft. That happened in August after Smith waived his right to a probable cause hearing.

During today’s pre-trial hearing before Judge Greg Stephens, Smith told the judge he would waive is right to a speedy trial so that court-appointed attorney Chris Frederick can prepare for trial. His bond is set at $2 million. He is scheduled to be back in court Oct. 21

Both Smith and Walker’s families left the courtroom at the same time and screaming, and some name-calling erupted with deputies being called to the third floor of the county government services center.

INITIAL STORY: 

A Hamilton teenager indicted last month for the shooting death of a 19-year-old in June will in Butler County Common Pleas Court today.

Michael Smith Jr., 17, who is being tried as an adult, is charged with murder and tampering with evidence for allegedly shooting Shon Walker to death.

MORE: Records: Teen charged in Hamilton murder has been incarcerated 3 times before 

Walker, 19, was shot point blank just after 9 p.m. on June 27 in the 400 block of East Avenue. Hamilton police say the teen had a firearm and shot Walker several times then concealed the weapon in his clothing and put it in a sewer in the area of 604 High Street.

The incident was caught on video, and a witness identified the teen as the “shooter,” according to court documents.

Because the seriousness of the crime and Smith’s age, the case was a mandatory bind-over to adult court if probable cause was found by county Juvenile Court Judge Ronald Craft. That happened in August after Smith waived his right to a probable cause hearing.

At that time Craft also ordered Smith be moved from the county juvenile detention center to the Butler County Jail because “there is great concern about his conduct while at JDC.”

Smith was arrested July 11, and the judge said that during his time at JDC the teen has been involved in a fight and making inappropriate comments to staff.

“Comments the court would perceive to be a threat to the facility,” Craft said.

Documents filed by the prosecution on Oct. 2 include more that 30 pieces of evidence, according to court documents.

MORE: Teen charged with shooting death of 19-year-old in Hamilton 

Evidence includes 18 videos from various residences and businesses, five search warrants, photos of recovered firearm and clothing, a hoodie, skull cap and audio recording of the defendant’s statement.

Smith was incarcerated in the Juvenile Detention Center three times previously, according to juvenile court records.

In September 2015, Smith was arrested by Hamilton police for inducing panic and three counts of assault. He spent two months in JDC, was placed on house arrest and ordered to serve 40 hours in the work program, have no weapons of any kind and write an apology letter. He was also was placed on probation and ordered to undergo counseling. An Airsoft gun was used in the offense.

The teen was charged in August 2018 with aggravated menacing by Hamilton police. The charge was amended to disorderly conduct. He spent about 30 day in JDC. He was placed on home incarceration and ordered to complete 20 hours of the work program.

In November 2018, the teen had a probation violation and was again placed on home incarceration. Two months later in December 2018, he was charged with a curfew violation and served another 30 days in JDC. He was also ordered to continue counseling, complete 20 hours of work program and given a 6 p.m. curfew.

In June, the teen also violated probation and was ordered to complete another 12 hours in the work program.

Thank you for reading the Journal-News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Journal-News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.