Mass Shooting Suspect Dies Awaiting Trial

( – On June 8, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) posted a notice on its social media pages announcing the death of a male detainee at the county’s main jail complex. Deputies discovered the unresponsive 29-year-old male inmate while conducting a routine cell block check at approximately 2:15 a.m. They rendered first aid, and other first responders continued the life-saving efforts, but the criminal suspect died. A news report recently confirmed his identity.

The following day, Fox News published an article detailing a statement from the deceased inmate’s public defender. Norman Dawson confirmed that his client, Smiley Martin, died the previous morning while in custody.

Martin had been awaiting trial in connection with an April 2022 shootout that resulted in six fatalities and 12 injuries near the intersection of K and 10th Streets, the largest mass shooting in Sacramento’s history. The incident involved at least five shooters from rival street gangs.

Dawson’s statement characterized Martin’s death as “tragic.” The notice also advised that his client had been “fighting to defend his innocence” during the criminal proceeding’s “preliminary hearing process.”

Local media outlets reported that Martin sustained serious injuries during the deadly shootout, requiring hospitalization for a couple of weeks. Officials transferred him to the Sacramento County Jail upon his release and charged him with possession of a machine gun and suspected possession of a firearm by a prohibited person. Prosecutors later charged him with three murder counts.

Law enforcement officials identified Martin’s brother, Dandrae Martin, as a shooter and charged him with a weapons offense. Both brothers had extensive criminal histories, including felony convictions involving violent attacks on several women whom Court records indicated they worked for the Martins as prostitutes.

The SCSO initially withheld Martin’s name pending family notification of his death. Officials said the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office would determine the cause of death and forward its finding to law enforcement officials. The SCSO also confirmed it would conduct a “thorough inmate death investigation.”

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