Book Spotlights 1994 Portage Disappearance & Murder
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It took years for investigators to uncover the truth of what happened to Khristine Renee Smith. To this day her remains have not been located and her husband, Russell L. Smith remains incarcerated.
Russ and Khristine Smith seemed like an ideal couple to those looking in from the outside. Married for 8 years, the two shared a daughter who neighbors said, Khristine doted on.
On September 28, 1994, Khristine Renee Smith disappeared from Portage, Michigan. Her husband, Russell Smith, told everyone she had left voluntarily with another man. Khristine's loved ones did not believe him. They did not think she would have abandoned her then seven-year-old daughter.
It wasn't until 1998 that Russell pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in connection to Khristine's case. He confessed that after they put their child on the school bus, they began to argue and Khristine threatened to leave with their daughter. Russell said he retrieved a gun then shot Khristine twice in the head killing her. Russell later agreed to help detectives find her body, but searches of the lake turned up nothing. He was sentenced to 35 to 70 years in prison for his wife's murder.
Author Patricia Springer, a former North-Texas-area newspaper reporter and radio news director, takes a look at the case in her book "Murder So Cold: A Father's Deadly Rage".
A synopsis of the book:
Brings to life the disturbing true story of Russ Smith, who, unbeknownst to his neighbors and friends, murdered his wife of eight years, but told everyone, including his young daughter, that she ran away with another man--a crime that remained unsolved until "cold case" investigators discovered the truth.