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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Murder scene vandalized

Thursday, June 2, 2005

The house in which a 14-year-old Mammoth Spring boy was shot and killed last week was vandalized May 28 and an adjacent trailer house was burned.

Deputy James Laneyof the Fulton County Sheriff's Department said authorities do not know who is responsible for the vandalism or blaze.

"We're not sure how the fire started," Laney said. "All we can say right now is it is being investigated."

He said the fire began at approximately 6:45 p.m. and was extinguished around 7:45 p.m. by the Mammoth Spring Fire Department.

Josh Mullins, a student at Mammoth Spring High School, was shot inside the house May 25.

Authorities have charged his friend, 17-year-old Stephen Smith, with murder in the case.

Smith, who owns the house, has been charged with first degree murder in connection with the shooting.

According to an affidavit released by the Fulton County Clerk's Office, Smith admitted to shooting Mullins but claimed it was an accident.

The Arkansas State Police and the Fulton County Sheriff's Department have been investigating the case.

Lt. Bill Beach of the Arkansas State Police said no evidence was lost because of the vandalism or fire.

"To my knowledge all of the information they (investigators) needed from the crime scene had already been collected," said Beach.

He said his office was informed about the vandalism and fire but they are not actively participating in the investigation.

Laney said the trailer house that burned had been occupied by Joe Smith, Smith's father, until his death last winter.

Fulton County Sheriff Walter Dillinger said Smith had been living alone in the house since his father died.

Smith is slated to appear June 8 in Fulton County Circuit Court to set a trial date.

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