Stephen Smith Case: Investigators Call Second Autopsy Of Teen Found Dead Near Murdaugh Estate ‘A Success,’ Claim ‘New Evidence’ Collected

investigators second autopsy stephen smith success
Source: GoFundMe

Apr. 6 2023, Updated 5:21 p.m. ET

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Investigators have declared the second autopsy of Stephen Smith to be a success and say new evidence was collected, according to authorities.

As Front Page Detectives previously reported, the teen’s body was exhumed almost eight years after his death in 2015.

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Smith, 19, was found dead in the middle of a dark country road near the Murdaugh family home on July 8, 2015. His death was initially ruled a hit-and-run, but now authorities believe his death was a homicide, according to a Front Page Detectives report.

On April 4, forensic expert Dr. Kenneth Kinsey, who was hired as a private investigator by Smith’s family, gave an autopsy update.

"I do know it was a success, they say they did collect evidence, it was very good documentation, and everybody was upbeat about the information that was collected," Kinsey said, People reported. "And that's not always the situation when you exhume someone after so many years."

While the final autopsy report was not ready yet, Kinsey noted, "I'm very very excited about the report coming and the pathologists were very upbeat."

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On April 3, Sandy Smith, Stephen’s mother, announced she is allocating a $35,000 reward from monies raised from the GoFundMe campaign for information leading to an arrest in connection with Stephen’s death, Front Page Detectives reported.

In a statement, Smith’s attorney, Ronnie Richter, said, "We hope that this reward will encourage anyone with information to come forward and provide the critical details needed to solve this case," according to People.

Anyone with information is urged to contact SLED at 803-737-9000 or email


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