An army guard is facing charges of murder, beating and suffocation of a recently hired guard during a brutal attack that was captured in a surveillance video in Washington.
Patrick Byrne, who is based at the Lewis-McCord joint base, was arraigned in a video conference from his jail on Friday, and a court-appointed lawyer pleaded not guilty on his behalf.
Court documents obtained by local points show that Pierce Byrne County prosecutors are charged with first-degree murder for the murder of 41-year-old Dennis Smith as he was on duty at the Tacoma Central Office on Sunday. His bloodied and lifeless body was found on the floor by a colleague at about 6 a.m. on July 18.
According to court documents, investigators said Smith was beaten until he was unrecognizable and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police allege witnesses told them that Byrne was hit in the face during a bar fight Saturday night before he made his way to the office building where Smith worked. Officers learned that Byrne had been drinking that night, then, at about 1 a.m. Sunday, he appeared at the door of the office building and passed by when Smith opened it, presumably forcing him to leave, according to court documents.
Investigators said they then saw security camera footage of a nearly ten-minute attack by Byrne on Smith, who repeatedly tried to fight and flee. Her efforts were in vain.
Byrne repeatedly punched Smith, grabbed his braided hair, and “dragged him like a rag doll,” court documents say. Byrne also took Smith’s keys, stabbed them in the face with a knife, and finally strangled him until he became lame, accusing him.
“She repeatedly beat him, attacked him and threw the hair of his head around,” the court documents said.
After leaving his severely beaten body, Byrne entered the conference room, broke a window and began hunting around furniture, court documents say.
He then jumped or fell about 14 feet from a landing, according to documents. Another security camera laid him on the concrete.
Police said Byrne was taken to hospital early Sunday after a 911 call about a bloodthirsty man screaming near the scene of the murder. according to KOMO-TV.
Byrne told a witness that he was stabbed, but authorities say they found no evidence of a knife wound. King-TV and others reported. Byrne also told a nurse that he had been sexually assaulted, but did not allow doctors to perform the relevant examination, the vehicle reported. Officers were reportedly told he was drunk and had suffered head injuries.
Police allege that Byrne was interrogated at the hospital and told them he did not remember the attack and turned black after drinking, KING-TV reported.
according to Stars and stripes, 26-year-old Birney joined the Army in March 2019 as an infantryman. The following year, he completed the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program and was later appointed to Lewis-McCord, the media reported.
The U.S. military on Friday issued a statement describing reports of a possible attack on Byrne as “absolutely horrific.”
“The Tacoma Police Department has full cooperation with the United States Army Special Operations Command,” the statement said. “Our deepest condolences to the families affected by this tragedy.”
Smith’s family described him on KING-TV as a sweet person who often kept himself and said they were “ruined” by the brutal murder.
County prosecutors have charged Byrne with murder, theft and kidnapping. He was ordered to Pierce County Jail on Thursday. Supreme Court Justice Harold Johnson set his bail at $ 2 million.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/patrick-byrne-charged-with-savage-murder-of-tacoma-security-guard-denise-smith?source=articles&via=rss | Patrick Byrne Charged With Savage Murder of Tacoma Security Guard Denise Smith