Wayne Smith, a 56-year-old Chester County resident was sentenced to death for a killing he was convicted of nearly 20 years ago.
It was May of 1995 when Smith stood trial for the murder of 26-year-old Eileen Marie Jones of Eddystone. According to Philly.com, “the two met when she asked him to come to a friend’s house to get high. Later they drove to a park to do more drugs, and he strangled her. Smith later confessed to police that he killed Jones.”
During the proceedings, Smith’s attorney attempted to withdraw as counsel. Due to his lawyer’s actions, and the fact that he did not “pursue all reasonable avenues” in defending his client, the case had to be revisited.
The original guilty verdict was upheld, but a new jury was to decide whether or not to sentence Smith to the death penalty.
After six hours, a Delaware County jury upheld the death row decision.
It was also not Smith’s first serious incident with the law. In 1980 he pleaded guilty to manslaughter and served four years after attacking a man outside of a Chester bar with a machete.