Suspect in child shooting described 'receiving threats'
Last updated 7/15/2023 at 12:41pm
A domestic violence court case and what the suspect described as "receiving threats" led to a father shooting his 7-year-old daughter on Tuesday afternoon, police said.
Police learned about 2 p.m. Tuesday that a small white SUV was being shot at by a male wearing all black near 12th and Calhoun streets. Another call to police reported that the mother of the victim, Destiny Smiley, was taking the child to a nearby hospital after she'd been shot in the head.
Kyilany Smiley was treated at Plains Regional Medical Center before being transferred to a Lubbock hospital. Her condition was listed as critical but stable going into the weekend, police said. A GoFundMe page has been established under her name.
Officials said Jeffrey Smiley, 48, shot at the vehicle carrying his daughter, ex-wife and others from the street before leaving the scene in another vehicle.
Jeffrey Smiley turned himself in to police later Tuesday. He told police he wasn't aware he was divorced, but that didn't matter to him. He said he just "didn't want to lose custody of his daughter."
Jeffrey Smiley told police he was at odds with Destiny Smiley's boyfriend, Stephen Page. He claimed he was "receiving threats" from Page and told police that he "would shoot back."
Police found Destiny Smiley "very distraught, crying and upset" at PRMC immediately after the shooting. That's where they also found a white Honda CR-V, which was covered in bullet holes on the driver's side, records show.
Destiny Smiley told police that she and Page had left the Clovis district court after settling a domestic violence hearing with her ex-husband.
Destiny Smiley and Page left the courthouse before Jeffrey Smiley to pick up their three children, Kyilany and two teenagers.
Destiny Smiley said they were on route to another location when they saw Jeffrey Smiley in a white Acura SUV. She said they tried avoiding him, but were cut off somewhere near Eighth and Hinkle streets. That was when Jeffrey Smiley exited the Acura and began shooting at the Honda CR-V.
Records show Jeffrey Smiley was accompanied in the Acura by his son-in-law Brandon Brooks, 32, and Jeffrey Smiley's other daughter, 29-year-old Jocelyn Smiley.
Brooks told police Jeffrey Smiley had called him to pick him up from the court house.
Brooks said Jeffrey Smiley told him to stop once they saw Destiny Smiley's vehicle. When the shooting began, Brooks said he tried to rapidly reverse away from Jeffrey Smiley.
Records show Brooks later pulled forward and picked up Jeffrey Smiley before fleeing the scene. New Mexico State Police then pulled over Brooks, who had already dropped off Jeffrey Smiley.
Jeffrey Smiley is charged with child abuse resulting in great bodily harm, possession of a firearm, five counts of assault with intent to commit a violent felony and child abuse. He is being held in Curry County Adult Detention Center without bond, records show.
Officers also arrested Jocelyn Smiley for child abuse. She was released Wednesday from the county jail.
Brooks was charged with accessory to assault with intent to commit a violent felony, and harboring or aiding a felon. He remained in the county jail without bond going into the weekend.