Olean murder victim stabbed to death

OLEAN, N.Y. (WIVB)- Judge Daniel Palumbo ruled Tuesday in Olean City Court there is enough evidence against Edward J. Smith, Jr. to move the case over to Cattaraugus County Court.

Smith, who is charged with Second Degree Murder, Assault, and Criminal Possession of a Weapon, will remain in custody at the Cattaraugus County Jail without bail.

The 50-year-old Olean resident is accused of murdering his wife, Kathy Smith, over Mother’s Day weekend.

“It’s very important because it means we will be able to continue to keep the defendant incarcerated or under some type of supervision while this matter is pending, so it’s very important. It also validates to us that we have some good credible evidence,” Cattaraugus County District Attorney Lori Rieman.

A 911 dispatch tape played in court Tuesday. The male caller said “I murdered my wife. I murdered my wife with a knife.” Police indicated in court that caller was Edward J. Smith, Jr.

Police also testified that when they arrived to Smith’s apartment on North Union Street at the Olean House, he told them he had killed his wife.

Investigators said when they found Kathy Smith, who they described to be in her mid-50s, she was lying on the bed with a red-handled butcher’s knife sticking out of her chest area, near her heart.

The last murder in Olean was in 2010. An Olean resident was murdered last year just outside the city limits, according to Police Chief Jeffrey Rowley.

News of Kathy Smith’s death comes as a shock to neighbors, who told News 4 the Smiths’ were a loving couple.

“She loved Ed and Ed loved her too,” said Victoria Lovell, who also resides at the Olean House.

“I was really sad about it because they were a nice couple,” neighbor Charles Doman said.

Investigators are still working to determine a motive in this case.

The Smith’s have a daughter, who was present in court Tuesday.

“He’s been bound over for action of the Grand Jury, and at this point it’s a waiting game to see what the Grand Jury does. I’d ask everybody to keep an open mind. Thing are not always what they appear. And we’re a long way from any ending or resolution in this case,” said Ben Smith, the Assistant Public Defender for Cattaraugus County.

The District Attorney’s office has 45 days to present this case to the Grand Jury.

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