Ohio vs. Smith A truth glasses look at Murder most foul

Article by Scott Hall (scotthall.cnj@gmail.com)                         http://murderpedia.org/male.S/s/smith-john-david.htm
            On August 30, 2000 the Wayne County Grand Jury indicted one John David Smith, also known as John Smith, III on one count of aggravated murder.  The victim his ex-wife, Janice Elaine Hartman Smith who disappeared in November 1974, a jury trial was held and on July 19, 2001 a jury acquitted him of aggravated murder but instead found him guilty of the lesser charge of murder and was sentenced “accordingly”.  This according to an official document obtained through research concerning part of his appeal and information within the document (a pdf link at bottom of article).  Before this article begins, I must make it clear that a chain of events that caught my attention are what caused this author to write this article, that along with letting our readers know that this outlet and its staff support all whose cause it is to help find the missing or aid in a new view possibly leading to a resolution, as we all know a fresh set of eyes sometimes is the key to overlooked detail, anyway, this case in particular caught my attention and from start to now, I could not and have not been able to shake the images and the logic behind some of the mystery, so then I decided that with our readers help, maybe we can change the world, one step at a time.  One thing in particular our readers must know, I believe the guilty party has been charged correctly and that justice is not done as of yet, there is one more piece of the puzzle that meets truth glass requirements and our readers insights.  I present to you, the John Smith truth glasses overview.                              

            Imagine for a moment, marrying your high school sweetheart after years of courting, dating and learning each other’s quirks, you tie the knot, a couple of years later your divorce is finalized and three days after it, your ex-wife comes up missing, not just missing, but possibly murdered.  At trial, 
there was evidence presented that Janice, born March 2, 1951 did in fact wed one John Smith and that the high school sweetheart marriage had a much darker side than originally thought, in fact in testimony it was stated that Mr. Smith had a temper that could flare up depending upon the situation and that in one incident he threw a chess board at a wall.  To get away from this situation, the then Mrs. Smith moved back home with her family and a short time later, Mr. Smith moved there as well and at the time of Janice’s disappearance, they were living together in a trailer home in Wayne County.  Mr. Smith would counter most of the testimony of his failed calm demeanor with constant references to Janice’s drug use and haphazard life, citing that on November 10, 1974 Janice was physically attacked while out on a date who was offered to come back to “a blonde haired man’s place” where she was beaten, stripped and had several attempts made on her for sexual intercourse.  The matter got out of hand to the point where a shot gun was present and statements such as “narcs always have an easy way out” with others shouting to not kill her or her date and eventually they were released, this according to the police report that Janice filed. 
            On November 14, 1974 the dissolution of marriage was finalized and just three short days later, Janice went missing with Mr. Smith not filing a missing persons report until November 19, 1974 with a slight exception that instead of citing her as his ex-wife, he listed her as his wife.  In the report, Mr. Smith said he last saw Janice with a stocky mustached man at a hotel, a story which was later verified by another friend that she indeed was at that location or going there that evening.  Mr. Smith’s younger brother stated at trial that Janice affirmed that things were improving now that the marriage was ending; including learning about the disappearance first hand from Mr. Smith as well as that Janice was going into a witness relocation program as she was a drug informant.  Michael, the younger brother, testified that during an football game that he went to the garage to check to see why Mr. Smith was not attending the viewing and discovered Mr. Smith had built a wooden box, about a foot high, four feet long and 16” wide, during the discovery he noted that Mr. Smith was lining the box with Janice’s clothing, rolled up and the box, though moved around a few times remained in that garage until 1979.  In June, Michael’s grandfather came running up to him a bit panicked and said that he had partially opened the box, Michael assured his grandfather he would get rid of it, so he took it out back, opened it and discovered a human skeleton with the legs sawed off at the knees and immediately called not the police, but Mr. Smith who subsequently showed up and took the box and its contents.  A fact that was upheld by Mr. Smith’s employer that he had left early on a Friday for business in Seville, Ohio. 
            The box would later be discovered through testimony and corroborating evidence on a roadside not far from the county’s highway department, in 1980.  A letter of interest was shared between two police departments and as luck would have it, there was a Jane Doe found in a wooden box with various items of clothing lining the interior.  The remains would later be identified as Janice’s and that her legs were possibly sawed off with a serrated knife and that no cause of death could be determined, citing specifically that a bullet that does not impact bone would not show up in skeletal remains.  A cadaver dog and testimony from Michael stating that Mr. Smith had said nasty things to him when pressed about what the box was for confirmed suspicions as the cadaver dog caught a scent that indeed human remains had been in that garage.  One item in particular that Mr. Smith referenced in his missing person report was a diamond encrusted watch and rings that Janice had on at the time, later on through investigation it was discovered that one Kathleen MacDonald was given this watch with a haunting “J” in its bellows, when she received it, she was told by Mr. Smith that it at one time belonged to his deceased wife, the watch was admitted and accepted into evidence at the trial and with due cause as several witnesses testified as seeing the watch several times with Mr. Smith after Janice’s disappearance, a direct contradiction of testimony provided in the missing person’s report.
            In some testimony it was laid before the jury that Mr. Smith over the years told varying stories of the incident, including at one point stating she was last seen leaving on a plane to Florida, was into drugs and rough people and they mutually agreed to end the marriage and that he even got a phone call to which he was given instructions to show up to a specific location and that is where he discovered Janice’s body, this along with testifying that there was a dead goat in the box (Michael testified that is what he was told by Mr. Smith about the box, it was a prank) and the reason he didn’t call the police when he discovered his dead ex-wife’s body, he was afraid they would kill him too.  The pressure of mounting evidence and questions by his later love life interests about the box, the dead body, the rumors were enough to cause Mr. Smith to disappear himself for two days in July of 1999.  The appeal was lengthy but Mr. Smith stood strong in his approach to gain a new trial or overturn the current conviction by citing errors that were made during his trial, including an attempt to introduce New Jersey evidence into this jurisdiction, yes it seems there may be another linked to him, yet to be discovered and sigh, this author through his truth glasses discovered yet maybe another or at least we hope it isn’t, but that will be covered a bit later, for now, we will concentrate on catching you up to speed on the errors that were cited.
            Mr. Smith, in his first argument, cites that he did not get a fair trial because some evidence in relation to his second wife’s disappearance was used in this trial and that because it was used; it violated his right to a fair trial.  According to the Courts rules of procedure, when things of this nature are proven or brought before the courts attention, where he specifically argued that because this evidence was allowed, it arbitrarily or unreasonably affected the courts attitude and citing state’s evidence part 48 where circumstantial evidence in reference to a case with similar circumstances took place in NJ was used in testimony against Mr. Smith, with a clear ruling given within those circumstances.  Simply, Mr. Smith cited that his side failed to argue against the objectionable evidence and that due to that error, a different set of circumstances could have resulted in his favor.  In the fifth argument (skipping ahead a bit to new information as the other all involve testimony and evidence arguments against states evidence number 48), Mr. Smith argues that the cadaver sniffing dog only partially corroborated the evidence presented because the dog only alerted to one part of the garage but not to others that were pointed out as locations noted in testimony, to which the prosecution defended that the scent would have been picked up at the point of decomposition and that total decomposition could have taken place by the time the box had been moved, Mr. Smith cites specifically even when showed by the handler the other location the dog did not hit the same as it did on the original location.  The younger brother also testified that since the night Mr. Smith, his brother came to pick up the box that it had not been seen since.  The ending argument in that rebuttal, is the courts instructions regarding considering the evidence where expert testimony had to be clear and concise and given proper weight, a fact the defense says is only partial thanks to the sniffer of a trained dog.    Without going into too much detail and allowing for our readers to deepen their own understanding, Mr. Smith did at one point in his rebuttals claim that he was unfairly painted as a “creep” who had a bad temper and a flair for violence within his calm and cool exterior.  As history shows, the jury didn’t buy into any of it and found him guilty of murder and so did the appellate court, naturally one would expect that this would go the distance and that we would hear “foul” from the defense, especially when they are trying to keep from being put to death or spending a truck load of time in prison for something that they “didn’t do”, again, I firmly believe he is as guilty as the day is long, regardless of daylight savings time, the courts and the jury made the correct judgment.
            Media outlets such as the Los Angeles Times (Oct 04, 2000) reported that the arrest and possible extradition of one John Smith in Escondido California had taken place bringing justice one step closer after 26 years and the disappearance of his second wife, Fran Gladden, he was arrested without incident with his third wife at his place of employment. (ABC News Report March 2, 2012) John Smith moved from town to town until he met and eventually settled down with his second wife, Fran.  Around a year after they were married, Fran also came up missing, she had suffered a broken hip but when questioned by 
police, Mr. Smith stated she had gone on a trip, note, her body has never been discovered nor her location known.  Fran’s sister and daughter teamed up to discover that Mr. Smith had been married before and that his first wife mysteriously disappeared, they enlisted the help of Garry, Janice’s brother whom all agreed that Mr. Smith had more to do with it that he was leading on, and it wasn’t until all these facts came to light along with a shared piece of information that the remains of his first wife were found and that Mr. Smith was arrested and stood trial, being convicted of the crime of murder.  There is no doubt, Mr. Smith had many wives, three we know of but how many love interests or meetings we may never know and to date the missing person better known as Fran has not been discovered.
            If you are thinking this sounds all too familiar, you would be correct, in that this scenario, this person and this story was featured in a movie, “Murder on Pleasant Drive”, and various other titles such as Cold Case Files and a book, Stranger in my bed (a series of books).  One little detail can change thousands of items and there are a couple of details that have came to light, including something not too many persons may know, that in the possessions of Mr. Smith were a couple of photographs and Mr. Smith isn’t speaking about them.  This is where this author comes into view of how this article came to pass, you see, I use social media and among the many likes I have and friends alike, missing in America is one of them and the murders and deception you have just read about was featured in one of their posts with a simple request for help in identifying the girl photographed and possibly the location where it may have been taken.  While doing some research, I read about Mr. Smith and his sick approach to love and life’s mates and my heart sank when the thought hit me that this woman may have been a victim to his evil mind.  We know for a fact, based on testimony in his trial, evidence discovered as well as thorough investigation, Mr. Smith has a fetish for marriage, missing persons and murder.  We know that when he is on the hunt for his next wife his demeanor is nice, outgoing, hardworking and diligent but that once the I do’s have cooled off he is sinister, domineering, controlling and not afraid to travel to dispose of his old flame’s, including being so bold as to leave a cadaver in a garage while pretending to not knowing anything of their whereabouts.  This author cannot imagine the feeling of knowing that someone you love has gone missing and given most statistics, those who go missing are generally found deceased or captive for extended periods of time, abused, tortured and humiliated, including some being subjected to human trafficking.  I think that those thoughts of things like that taking place is what captured my attention in seeing the young ladies photographs.  I hope my truth glasses were in focus as I looked over the photographs and tried to place myself in this emotional turmoil for not just one, but three families, two of which had missing members. 
            This monster, John D. Smith aka John Smith, III, deserves to stay behind bars, but, what concerns me most, the photographs of the other Jane Doe’s found on his person, neither of which have been identified.  What is known is that one of the photographs was taken in an area where August Max (a clothing store) was near as it was discovered that an reverse printed reflection of its own neon appeared in one of the photo’s and that this girl was standing in front of a crystal store, wearing a plaid designed shirt and carrying a purse.  The Federal Bureau of Investigation is seeking information from anyone who may recognize this individual in this picture or know someone who does and I firmly believe that it can be done.  In the reference links at the bottom of this article are those from the supporting evidence about this case, news outlets and two very important ones, one to the website for missing in America and the other, a link to the FBI seeking not just my own help, but yours as well.  Put on your truth glasses and your thinking caps and please help bring closure to the families this man, Mr. Smith may have affected, remember Janice and her sawed off legs and skeletal remains being found on a roadside, remember Fran who has yet to have a voice and remember the photographs being presented in this article as well as within the links and let’s hope to bring closure, justice and peace to a family and families in need.  Thank you readers, God Bless and keep your truth glasses handy.

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