LITTLE FALLS — A 64-year-old Little Falls man was arrested after admitting to police that he had shot and killed two teenagers who were allegedly breaking into his home.
According to the sheriff’s department report, at approximately 1 p.m. on Nov. 23, Morrison County deputies were called to Byron David Smith’s home on Elm Street north of Little Falls on a suspicious-activity call.
According to the release Smith immediately told the deputies that he had shot and killed two people breaking into his home the day prior. Deputies then located the bodies of two teenagers in the basement of Smith’s home.
The teens were identified as Haile Kifer, 18, and Nicholas Brady, 17. School officials said the victims were cousins. Kifer was a senior at Little Falls and Brady was a student at Pillager High School.
During the investigation deputies and agents of the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension discovered information that led to Smith’s arrest for 2nd degree murder. Formal charges are pending with the Morrison County Attorney’s Office.
Morrison County Sheriff Michel Wetzel said in the release that “a person has every right to defend themselves and their homes, even employing deadly force if necessary.” According to the release circumstances of this case led deputies to believe that Smith went beyond that point.
More details of the investigation will be released after Smith’s initial court appearance. A press conference will be held at 1 p.m. on Monday at the Morrison County Government Center.