Conway father of 2-year-old, who shot himself on Christmas Day, indicted on manslaughter charge

troot@thesunnews.comApril 4, 2013 

— A Conway man, whose 2-year-old son shot himself on Christmas Day, was indicted on an involuntary manslaughter charge by an Horry County grand jury, according to court records.

Rondell Javon Smith, 30, of Conway was indicted on the charge in the indictments released Tuesday. The indictment showed that Smith’s 2-year-old, Sincere Smith, died Dec. 25 from a gunshot wound and authorities seek to hold Smith responsible for the “unintentional killing.”

Smith was arrested late Dec. 25 on the charge and released the following day on $500 bond, according to records at J. Reuben Long Detention Center.

Sincere Smith died on the way to the hospital after picking up a gun his father had left on a table and shooting himself on Christmas Day, according to police.

According to the Gun Control Act of 1968, Rondell Smith is not allowed to possess or acquire a gun or ammunition because he was convicted of a misdemeanor crime that could’ve carried more than two years imprisonment.

Smith was convicted on misdemeanor drug possession charges – marijuana and cocaine – in 2005 and 2006 according to a State Law Enforcement Division background check.

In 2006, he was sentenced to three years imprisonment, suspended, with two years of probation to run concurrently for possession of less than one gram of meth or cocaine base. He was sentenced to one year, suspended, with two years probation for possession of 28 grams or less of marijuana, according to SLED.

Smith did not have any convictions between 2006 and his son’s death, records show.

Rondell Smith, in an interview with The Sun News a couple days after his son’s death, was inconsolable by family and said no punishment by the law would suffice.

Tears steadily ran down Smith’s face as he recalled the day his son died. About two weeks before the child’s death, Smith said someone tried to break into his home while he and his family were there. He said he felt like he was nothing because we wouldn’t have been able to protect his family, so he got a gun.

Smith and the child’s mother, Lakisha Brown, 27 were charged Feb. 12 with unlawful neglect of a child after their younger child, a daughter, tested positive for cocaine and marijuana, according to authorities. Those charges are pending against the couple.

The couple were each released the same day they were arrested on $10,000 bail.

The S.C. Department of Social Services tested the couple’s younger child, a daughter who was less than a year old in December following Sincere’s death, according to the police report. The testing showed she had inhalation exposure to the cocaine and marijuana as well as ingestion exposure to marijuana.

Contact TONYA ROOT at 444-1723 or follow her at Twitter.com/tonyaroot.

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