Patrick Smith was recently handed a life sentence for killing a Hamilton shop owner in an attack Toronto defence lawyer Colin Adams argues was unintentional, and impacted by drugs and alcohol.
Smith, 27, was found guilty of first-degree murder in the May 2010 death of Elham Dashti, the Hamilton Spectator reports. Read Hamilton Spectator
He was represented by Toronto criminal defence lawyers Adams and Aliki Yorgiadis of Hicks Adams LLP.
In an interview with AdvocateDaily.com, Adams says, “Patrick Smith accepted responsibility for his acts from the outset. The only issue was the degree of culpability."
Yorgiadis adds, “We maintained, and still do, that the death was carried out during a chemically-fueled attack of panic and rage, and that Patrick Smith never intended the death of the victim and failed to appreciate that what he did might result in her death."
Assistant Crown attorney Janet Booy referenced Smith’s video interrogation where he described to police putting the victim in a sleeper hold going down the stairs and wrapping a head scarf around her neck, the Spectator article says. When she wouldn’t be quiet, he “punched and kicked her” until she stopped moving, it continues.