‘Self defense’ not believed in 2009 killing


By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

He claimed “self defense,” but gunman Christopher Allen Smith on Dec. 14 was found guilty of murder in a 2009 shooting on Jasmine Avenue in West Sacramento. Smith, who is white, killed Gidd Gomel Robinson IV, who is black, after the two had some kind of confrontation near Smith’s pickup truck shortly after noon on Nov. 3, 2009.

  Prosecutors alleged that race was a motive in the shooting, although evidence for that, including evidence that Smith had visited racist websites, was disputed by the defense.

According to West Sacramento police at the time of the shooting, and to more recent information from the Yolo County District Attorney’s office, the incident is supposed to have happened like this:

Police responded to the report that there was a “man down” on the 400-block of Jasmine at at 12:33 p.m. on that day in 2009. They found Smith with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. He was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead.

Smith had apparently just left his father’s house in West Sacramento, with his seven-year old son in his pickup truck. Smith drove past Robinson, who was walking his children to school.

According to the D.A.’s office, Smith gave Robinson a “hard stare,” and Robinson “flipped him off.” Smith drove his truck around the corner and loaded his gun.

Robinson approached the truck and some kind of confrontation ensued. Smith claimed Robinson displayed a gun, but no gun was found. Smith shot him.

“Smith immediately drove to the Elkhorn Boat Ramp and tossed the gun in the river and rubbed mud on his hands to conceal any gunshot residue,” said a statement from the D.A.’s office. “He was arrested on Old River Road as he was leaving the boat ramp.”

  West Sacramento police found over 40 firearms in Smith’s home.

He faces 45 years to life in state prison, and will be sentenced by Judge Stephen Mock in Yolo County Superior Court on Jan. 13.

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