Thursday, October 17, 2013

College student waiting for taxi hit by stray bullet, left paralyzed

18-year-old Martha Childress, a freshman at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, was waiting for a taxi cab with her friend early Sunday morning when a fight broke out nearby between three men.

One of the men, 21-year-old Michael Smith pulled out a .40-caliber handgun and fired. The bullet hit Martha in her midsection and lodged in her spinal cord. The bullet left her paralyzed from the hips down and damaged her liver and kidney.

Before being shot, Martha was out with a high school friend who was visiting her at college. The two had been to a Hunter Hayes concert and had gone out afterwards for something to eat. Her mother had told her to take a cab home rather than risk walking late at night.

Smith faces charges of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, and possession of a stolen pistol.

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