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Board of Parole Grants Release To 41-Year-Old Man Convicted With Second-Degree Murder in 1994 After 27 Years Of Imprisonment

A man convicted with second-degree murder in 1994 has been granted parole on Saturday. He was 13 years old when he murdered Derrick Robie, a 4-year-old boy in Steuben County, western New York, Associated Press news reported.  

Smith Was Granted Release

According to an emailed report from the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, Eric M. Smith, now 41 years old, entered his eleventh plea in court earlier this month before being granted freedom at the earliest possible date of November 17 this year. Smith’s release from jail was approved by the Board of Parole after he had served 27 years in prison. The rationale for his release, as well as the process by which the parole board members arrived at their decision, were not disclosed.

Photograph of Eric Smith Following The incident in 1994 (Photo: Curioustic)

The transcripts of the hearing were immediately not made available following the conclusion of the hearing. Dale and Doreen Robie, Derrick’s parents, have been fighting against Smith’s release and requesting that the time between hearings be extended for a number of years now. After Smith’s were given parole, they refused to make any public statements about their son’s tragic incident.

Read Also: 21-Year-Old Man Allegedly Murders 2 Women In St. Petersburg, Victims Reportedly Mistaken Targets

He Sexually Assaulted The Victim

Eric M. Smith was accused of leading the little kid, Derrick Robie, into a wooded area near Robie’s residence in August 1993, where he then proceeded to bash his head with a rock. The incident occurred in the Steuben County community of Savona. According to a report by WHAM 13, after he had battered Derrick to death, Smith sexually molested the boy. During the investigation into the death of Derrick Robie in 1994, Smith was arrested and charged with second-degree murder.

Smith’s attorney attempted to establish that Smith was suffering from a mental disorder but was ultimately unsuccessful in his efforts. Smith was sentenced to nine years in prison, with the possibility of a life term after that. The case gained widespread popularity because the photograph of the minor culprit, who had a mop of red hair and was dressed in a Bugs Bunny sweatshirt, was circulated online.

Related Article: 2-Month-Old Boy Dies With A Fractured Skull; 27-Year-Old Mom Charged With Murder A Year Later