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Forum News Service, Published January 08 2014

Man pleads guilty to killing his brother on Spirit Lake Reservation

A Bismarck man pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges of voluntary manslaughter, assault resulting in serious bodily injury and assault with a dangerous weapon stemming from an incident on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation almost a year ago.

Orlen Francis Smith Jr., 26, a member of the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, was accused of being involved in an altercation with his brother, Daniel Smith, at his home in St. Michael, N.D., on Feb. 13. Smith Jr. swung a switchblade at his brother, striking the side of his chest and piercing his heart, according to a news release issued Wednesday by U.S. Attorney Timothy Purdon.

Daniel Smith died at the scene.

Smith Jr. attacked two others at the home, including one person who suffered a forehead laceration, the release said.

The voluntary manslaughter charge carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, while each of the other charges carries a maximum penalty of 10 years.

Smith Jr. will be sentenced April 7.