By Nate Gartrell | [email protected] | Bay Area News Group PUBLISHED: September 18, 2018 at 6:31 pm | UPDATED: September 18, 2018 at 6:46 pm MARTINEZ — A murder defendant who was out on bail is presumed to be a fugitive from justice after he failed to show up in court the day the verdict came in. Sherill Lynn Smothers, 56, of Granite Bay, was due in court at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday to hear the verdict in his murder case. After he failed to appear, Contra Costa Couty Judge John Kennedy issued a no bail bench warrant for Smothers. The warrant means Smothers — who is paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair because of a car crash in the early 1990s — is now a wanted man. His current whereabouts are unknown, and members of his family who attended his two-week trial did not appear in court Tuesday. Smothers is accused of murdering his on-again, off-again girlfriend, Marsha Carter, in her Richmond home nearly 35 years ago. He was linked to the crime through blood DNA evidence found in Carter’s home. Jurors deliberated for about three hours this week before announcing that they had reached a verdict. After issuing an… Read full this story
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