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Killing of 2 Minnesota Teens Stirs Up Strong Emotions

Morrison County Sheriff
Photo by WJON.com’s Jim Maurice

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Local officials knew the grisly killings of two teenagers who broke into a man’s Little Falls home on Thanksgiving Day would stir up strong emotions.

Morrison County Sheriff Michel Wetzel says his office has received several calls, some critical of the fact that Byron Smith was charged with murder. Wetzel says he’s a firm believer in property owners’ rights, but that charges in this case are appropriate.

Smith is charged in the deaths of 18-year-old Haile Kifer and 17-year-old Nicholas Brady. Wetzel says Smith shot them multiple times after they broke into his house.

The case has sparked strong opinions on both sides. Some people say Smith went too far even though the teens were doing something wrong, though others believe he was within his rights to protect his home.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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