Eyota teen reaches plea deal in death of 5-year-old brother

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Updated: May 04, 2021 04:50 PM
Created: May 04, 2021 04:34 PM

(ABC 6 News) - The Eyota teen charged in the death of his 5-year-old brother has reached a plea deal.

According to Olmsted County Attorney Mark Ostrem, 18-year-old Kaleb Smith has agreed to plead guilty to 1st-degree manslaughter. 

As part of the plea deal, second-degree murder and domestic assault by strangulation charges are being dropped.

According to the criminal complaint, on June 1, 2020, officials were called to the Eyota home just after 4:30 p.m. where they found the 5-year-old unresponsive in an upstairs bedroom.

The 5-year-old was not breathing and was taken to St. Marys in Rochester where he was later pronounced dead.

The mother told law enforcement she had left the home for a "short period of time" and that Kaleb had been taking care of the younger brother in the house.

Officials say that Kaleb went into the 5-year-olds room because he was crying and throwing a fit. Kaleb then took a blanket, draped it over the child's body and head.

Court documents say after the child continued shrieking Kaleb admitted to returning to the bedroom and covering his brother's mouth and nose for "one to two minutes."

An autopsy found brain swelling, which indicates hypoxia by smothering. Hypoxia is when the body does not get enough oxygen.

Smith faces up to 15 years in prison for first-degree manslaughter.

Sentencing is scheduled for May 27.

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