Aggressive prosecutors in Bentonville, Arkansas, sent out subpoenas to anyone who had any type of contact with defendant Albert K. Smith while he was in jail awaiting trial. That included one “Murphy Smith,” to whom Albert had written a letter while in the slam.
Murphy turns out to be a 5-year-old shih tzu. Why Albert was writing to Murphy at all, let alone from jail, is not explained, although probably Albert knew that prosecutors were watching his mail and wanted to throw them off track. They realized their mistake on Tuesday after the defendant’s brother brought the dog in to answer the subpoena. Murphy was not allowed to testify because of a no-dogs rule at the courthouse.
Prosecutor Robin Green stated, “The dog was friendly enough and probably would have been a very cooperative witness.” CNN’s website has a picture of a friendly-appearing shih tzu wearing a straw hat and a funny ribbon, but it appears that this is a file picture rather than the actual witness.
In a humorous note, Albert Smith is awaiting trial for the brutal murder of his ex-wife’s boyfriend.
But the dog seems friendly enough.