UPDATED STORY HERE: Smith Relatives Discuss “Witchcraft” Triple Murder in Pensacola
Escambia County Deputies suspect witchcraft was a motivating factor in the savage murders of a mother and her two sons in Pensacola last week.
And in the latest shocking twist, one of the victims was a “critical member” of the Department of Homeland Security.
As we reported on Monday, 77-year-old Voncile Smith and her two sons, 49-year-old Richard Thomas Smith and 47-year-old John William Smith, were found dead on Friday morning. The three bodies were discovered by deputies conducting a welfare check at their home on Deerfield Drive.
WARNING: DISTURBING DETAILS BELOW
At a press conference on Tuesday, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office released graphic details on how the three bodies were discovered.
According to authorities, all three bodies were found beaten with claw hammers and laid out for some kind of ritual by the murderer. All three had their throats slit, and Richard Smith was found with a gunshot wound to the head.
Richard Smith was described by Sheriff David Morgan as a “critical member” of the Department of Homeland Security. Morgan had to communicate with several national agencies to ensure his investigation didn’t pose a threat to national security.
Authorities have evidence that led them to believe witchcraft was somehow involved in their deaths, saying it was a “ritualistic” act. Investigators noted that their murders occurred on the night of a blue moon, which is heavily referenced in witchcraft lore, and occurs once every three years.
Investigators say they spoke to a person of interest in the case, but didn’t release a name or photo. All they confirmed was that the person of interest is a “white male” believed to have ties to a faction of witchcraft.
The murders aren’t believed to be financially motivated either. The Smith family had a safe containing $7,000 in their home, but the suspect didn’t take anything of value in the aftermath of the crime, they said.
Deputies also noted that the Smith family was “reclusive.” They lived in the same house for 27 years, rarely speaking to any of their neighbors on Deerfield Drive.