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Horvatt Gets Life in Prison for Murder of Summer Smith

4:30 AM, Nov 5, 2010   |    comments
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PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. -- A man who initially claimed a black man shot and killed his fiancee during a robbery on the side of the road in Putnam County will spend his life in prison for her murder.

A judge sentenced 33-year-old Clint Horvatt to live in prison for the first-degree murder of Summer J. Smith.  A jury deliberated for one hour on Thursday to reach a guilty verdict in Horvatt's trial, which lasted two-and-a-half days.

The murder happened on State Road 26 in December of 2008.  Horvatt and Smith, 36, drove to Gainesville for a day of shopping.  Horvatt told deputies back then he stopped to help a pickup truck on the side of the road near Melrose.  Horvatt claimed a black man in a hooded sweatshirt robbed them and shot Smith as he grabbed their valuables.

A few weeks later deputies arrested Horvatt and 53-year-old William Dewey Foster.  Investigators believe Horvatt contacted Foster about having Smith killed.  Investigators believe the shooting was staged by Horvatt to look like a robbery.  Authorities found Horvatt's wallet, Smith's purse, and the murder weapon buried in the woods near Foster's home.

Foster is due to go on trial next month, according to our news partner The Florida Times-Union.


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