Ex-Virginia Tech LB Isi Etute found not guilty in murder trial

CHRISTIANSBURG, Virginia (AP) – A jury on Friday acquitted a former Virginia Tech football player who had been accused of fatally beating up a man he says he initially believed in a Tinder match to be a woman.

Former player Isimemen Etute, 19, was found not guilty on a second-degree murder charge in the 2021 death of Jerry Smith, 40, of Blacksburg. The jury deliberated for approximately three hours before returning its verdict at around 6:30 pm. , reported the Roanoke Times.

Immediately after the verdict was announced, Smith’s family quickly left the courthouse. The District Attorney, Montgomery County Chief Commonwealth Attorney Patrick Jensen, declined to comment and referred questions to his boss, Commonwealth Attorney Mary Pettitt.

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