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A suspended Virginia Tech linebacker charged with the fatal beating of a Tinder game has been charged with second-degree murder.
Isimemen Etute, 18, was indicted by a Montgomery County grand jury for the murder of 40-year-old restaurant manager Jerry Paul Smith on Tuesday, The Roanoke Times reported.
Etute, a freshman at Virginia Tech, was arrested on June 2 for the May 31 murder.
Prosecutors allege that Etute met Smith on Tinder in April, when he allegedly posed as a woman named ‘Angie’, and the two had oral sex.
A month later, Etute returned to Smith’s apartment in downtown Blacksburg, allegedly to find out if Smith was a man or a woman, using his phone’s flashlight to get a better view of Smith, before repeatedly punching and stomping on the victim.
Smith was found dead in his apartment the next day, police said, and a medical examiner’s office ruled that Smith died of blunt force trauma to the head.
A hearing is now scheduled for November 18.
When Etute discovered on May 31 that Smith was a man, Montgomery County Commonwealth attorney Mary Pettitt alleges that she struck Smith in the face five times before he fell to the ground.
She then allegedly she struck the victim at least five more times and stomped on him.
When she left, prosecutors say, Etute heard “bubbling and gurgling” coming from Smith, but did not call police.
Smith’s body was discovered in his apartment the next day, Blacksburg police said in a statement.
An autopsy report revealed that Smith died of blunt force trauma to the head, the Richmond-Times Dispatch reported, and all the bones in Smith’s face were broken and his teeth were missing.
Etute reportedly told police after his arrest in June that Smith did not defend himself, according to WSLS.com.
His attorney, James Turk, previously told DailyMail.com that Smith had several social media accounts in which he posed as a woman named ‘Angie’.
It seemed that Smith lived as a man during his everyday life, including at work, and his family referred to him using masculine pronouns.wikipedia
“No one deserves to die,” Turk told reporters after his client’s arrest, “but I don’t mind saying, don’t pretend you’re something you’re not.”
“Don’t target or attract anyone under that perception,” he said. ‘That is wrong.’
In an obituary, Smith’s family remembered the restaurant manager whose nephews nicknamed ‘Gigi’ as a ‘well-mannered young man throughout his life.’
His family asked that donations in Jerry’s honor be sent to St. Jude Children’s Hospital in lieu of flowers.
Meanwhile, Etute was released in June on a guaranteed bond of $ 75,000 under house arrest and electronic monitoring. He was ordered to stay with his family in Virginia Beach.
Etute was suspended from his school and soccer team during the investigation.
Isimemen Etute Quick and Facts
- Isimemen Etute, 18, was indicted on Tuesday in the murder of 40-year-old restaurant manager Jerry Paul Smith
- Prosecutors allege Etute matched with Smith on Tinder in April, when Smith was reportedly posing as a woman named ‘Angie,’ and they had oral sex
- He then went back to Smith’s apartment on May 31, allegedly to find out whether Smith was a male or a female
- After discovering that Smith was a man, prosecutors say Etute repeatedly punched and stomped on him
- Smith’s cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma to the head
- A lawyer for Etute previously told DailyMail.com that Smith had multiple social media accounts pretending to be a woman named Angie
- But Smith lived his day-to-day life as a male and his family referred to him by male pronouns
- The lawyer has suggested that it was wrong for Smith to pretend to be a woman, claiming he ‘lured’ Etute