The Unsolved Homicide of Darrel Smith

Published: Feb. 16, 2023 at 9:25 AM EST
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Darrel Smith was shot to death at his Woodland home 15 years ago, and as time marches on his killer is still at large. NewsSource8′s Brian Bouchard reviews the facts of this unsolved homicide.

Darrel Smith was 56 years old, just 4 days away from his 57th birthday when he was shot and killed in his garage along Thomas Road in Woodland on the snowy day of February 6th, 2008. His wife, Barbara Smith, discovered him after arriving home in the early evening to the unusually unlit and empty house.

“After I put my car in the barn, there was one tiny light on in the shop, or the garage, and I went in, and I didn’t see him and I gave a holler, no answer, so I came in the house and I thought “eh something isn’t right” because the door was locked to the garage and he never locked the door. It wasn’t until my second trip in the garage that I found him, and he kind of was under a bench, which if you just drop, you don’t drop under a bench.”

Smith then contacted 911, and the incident was initially reported as an unattended death. Upon further investigation, Darrel Smith’s wallet and home safe were discovered missing from the property, and police began to suspect it was a robbery gone wrong. Police initially thought the incident was related to a string of daytime robberies that occurred in the area, with missing safes being the common denominator, however that thought process was dismissed the following year in 2009. The missing Safe, as well as the suspected murder weapon, along with DNA evidence was allegedly recovered by authorities in the months following the murder.

“Real critical evidence is in our possession but we’re really lacking a key piece of information right now to push the case forward.” says Det. John Cote – Maine State Police in a 2009 Press Conference.

Smith said in a 2016 interview, that she believes Darrel told the intruder where to find the safe before he was shot.

“Knowing my husband, if they were badgering him or whatever, he would have said “Well there’s a safe in the house” because he knew darn well that there really wasn’t anything of value in it. So my gut feeling is he told them because nothing else was disturbed in the house whatsoever, and it was in a spot that you wouldn’t just see coming in here.”

After the unsolved homicide was announced to the public, a tip was received that a Small, Dark Colored pickup truck and driver were seen on Thomas Road at around Noon on the day of the murder with it’s hazard lights on and hood up.

“This dark colored pickup that was seen the day of the murder on Thomas Road, we believe was directly involved in this murder” says Cote.

Smith and the State Police also suspected that someone in the surrounding community knew who murdered her husband.

“Well I don’t know how they can live with themselves after doing that. There’s got to be someone out there that knows about it but for some reason they’re not coming forward.”

“It is frustrating that if that knowledge is out there it hasn’t been shared with us in a way that is direct solid and relevant that we can move forward with.”

WAGM reached out to the Maine State Police and the Maine Department of Public Safety for an interview, however our request was denied due to the workload of detectives stating “we are not in the position to participate in interviews right now.”

“We can’t seem to find out much information about what they’re doing, I haven’t heard anything from them, but a detective has told me that they are working some of these cases so I guess that’s my hope is that they find a thread somewhere that someone else has overlooked.” says Smith.

The Maine State Police did say that this case remains active and Maine State Police detectives would be interested in talking to anyone who has information about Darrel Smith’s death and can be reached at (207) 973-3750.

Brian Bouchard, Newssource8