Man Accused Of Murdering Grad Student In L.A. Furniture Store Indicted On New Charges
In January 2022, Shawn Laval Smith allegedly attacked 24-year-old Brianna Kupfer after he entered the business where she was working alone, police say.
Officials have unsealed a new indictment against the man accused of brutally murdering a woman found stabbed dozens of times at her job in Los Angeles.
On Jan. 13, 2022, Brianna Kupfer, a 24-year-old graduate student at UCLA, was working alone at the luxury furniture store Croft House when authorities say Shawn Laval Smith, 32, entered the Hancock Park business.
“She sent a text to a friend letting her know that there was someone inside the location that was giving her a bad vibe,” LAPD Lt. John Radke said, the Los Angeles Daily News reported. “Regrettably, that person did not see the text immediately.”
Around fifteen minutes after Kupfer sent the message, a customer entered the store and found Kupfer dead.
An autopsy determined the victim suffered 26 stab wounds during the attack, including 11 to the chest.
Investigators were able to collect video surveillance that showed a possible suspect in the case. Following a massive manhunt, authorities arrested Smith, who police said appeared to be homeless, on Jan. 19, 2022, in Pasadena after a tipster recognized him from a flyer.
Nearly a year later, on Dec. 5, officials made public a new indictment filed in November against Smith. According to KNBC, in addition to a murder charge, Smith now also faces two special circumstance allegations: lying in wait, and use of a knife.
If convicted of the charges against him, Smith could be sentenced up to life in prison without parole, the station reported.
According to authorities, Smith has an extensive criminal history that stretches back to at least 2010.