Wednesday, October 18, 2017 Elyria 57°


Expert: Evans failed lie-detector test


ELYRIA — Willie Evans IV has denied having anything to do with the shooting death of 64-year-old Michael Smith last year, but the man who administered a lie-detector test to him testified Tuesday that Evans was lying.

Evans, 18, showed signs of deception when William Evans II asked him whether he ever held Smith’s wallet, whether he shot Smith, whether he was at the trunk of the car in which Smith was found dying and whether he pulled the trigger, William Evans testified.
Willie Evans and William Evans are not related.

Polygraph examinations typically aren’t admissible in court, but Willie Evans and prosecutors reached an agreement that he would take the test and whatever the results were would be allowed into his aggravated murder trial.

Michael A. Smith was found dying in the trunk of his car April 13, 2006.

That agreement didn’t stop defense attorney Paul Griffin from questioning the validity of the tests and asking county Common Pleas Judge Christopher Rothgery to bar the results, a request Rothgery denied.

Griffin suggested that external events such as explosions, thunder and lightning, or a police presence could throw off a test, but William Evans said that wasn’t the case with the examination he gave Willie Evans.

The only thing that happened to throw off the test, William Evans said, was that Willie Evans burped once during the test, and he had to repeat a question because of it.

Smith was found shot in the trunk of his wife’s car shortly after midnight on April 13, 2006. The retired steelworker had gone outside to move his wife’s car, which she had left on the street at his request while he was at a horse racing track for the evening.

Evans is accused, along with Tyrone Young and Barry Williams, of confronting Smith and stealing his wallet, which was found by police 15 months later about a block away.

The three men all face life in prison if convicted, but Williams is listed as a witness in Evans’ case and may have cut a deal with prosecutors for a reduced sentence in exchange for his testimony.

James Huff, an eyewitness to the killing, testified Monday and again Tuesday that he saw Evans pistol whip Smith in the head and then shoot him.

Assistant Summit County Medical Examiner Dorothy Dean testified Tuesday that Smith died from a single gunshot wound to the abdomen. Smith died while in surgery at Akron General Hospital after he was found in the trunk of the car.

Carolyn Smith, Smith’s wife, also testified Tuesday, and she identified the note her husband left her asking her to leave her car in the street.

The trial is scheduled to resume today.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or

Click to view comments
To Top

Fetching stories…