Woman Charged In Fatal Ooltewah Stabbing Found Guilty Of Reckless Aggravated Assault

  • Thursday, March 23, 2023

A woman charged in a fatal stabbing in Ooltewah was found guilty of reckless aggravated assault on Thursday.

Kimberly Smart, who was 32 at the time of the July 17, 2021, incident, was charged with criminal homicide in the death of 34-year-old Kristal Michelle Reno. She was tried on a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter in the courtroom of Judge Boyd Patterson.

Felony aggravated assault in Tennessee carries 3-15 years.

 An attorney told the jury on Tuesday that the fatal stabbing occurred when Ms. Smart became upset that Ms. Reno had taken some roach motels (traps) out of her car.

Alex Shoaf of the public defender's office said Ms. Reno "liked to fight." He said the two women argued over the roach motel issue, then Ms. Smart stabbed her with a kitchen knife that Ms. Reno threw at her.

He said when Ms. Reno began bleeding profusely, Ms. Smart "tried her very best to save her."

Prosecutor Kevin Loper said the knife wound severed two major arteries in the victim's neck. He said the victim "had no chance."

He said Ms. Smart then "fled out the back door."

The jury saw body cam footage of paramedics trying to clean large amounts of blood off Ms. Reno.

Another body cam video showed Ms. Smart being located by a deputy near the house at 9311 Bill Reed Road in Ooltewah where the incident happened.

She said, "I didn't mean to do it. It was an accident. She threw the knife and all I did was defend myself. I did everything I could to help her."

A man at the house said Ms. Smart appeared to have tripped over a trash can while holding the knife.

The victim was transported by Hamilton County EMS to a local hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.

There were eight people living in the "modest" house, it was stated.

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