The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local News

February 6, 2013

Brothers arraigned on murder charges

Family sheds tears, expresses anger

ANDERSON, Ind. — Jonathon and Joshua Wood’s family fought back tears Wednesday as the grim reality of the brothers’ alleged involvement in the killing of Spencer Smith hit home.

Each man, Jonathon, 19, and Joshua, 23, was charged with murder and robbery with intent to commit bodily harm.

The family missed the completion of Jonathon’s video arraignment, but was present for most of Joshua’s hearing before Madison Circuit Court Magistrate Stephen Clase.

Not-guilty pleas were entered for both men.

Anger also accompanied the family’s tears.

Tim Wood, father of the two men, said he is troubled about many aspects of how the case has been handled so far, including a search of his family’s home by Madison County sheriff’s deputies Tuesday evening.

Wood said he was angry because detectives conducting the search cut open a new mattress and box spring while attempting to locate a coin collection and black wallet that belonged to Smith.

They did not find those items in his home, Wood said.

On Monday, 45-year-old Malcom D. Cobb of Anderson was also charged with murder and robbery resulting in bodily harm.

That’s also a reason why Woods is unhappy about the charges against his boys.

According to a probable cause affidavit, and by Cobb’s own admission in a 911 recording, he is the one who shot Smith.

Cobb claimed he was acting in self-defense.

The case pieced together by investigators casts events in a different light, however.

According to the probable cause affidavit, this is what allegedly happened:

The four men were using drugs and drinking in Smith’s living room Jan. 28, when Cobb confronted the 22-year-old Smith with an allegation of rape, which he denied.

Cobb persisted with his claim, holding a knife at Smith’s throat at one point. Joshua Wood told Cobb to stop. When the older man pointed the knife at him, Joshua went outside, according to the affidavit.

That’s when events turned deadly.

Smith got up from the sofa where he was sitting and went into his bedroom. Cobb followed. He allegedly pulled a handgun, ordered Smith to open a safe in the closet and then shot him in the shoulder, according to a statement Jonathon made to investigators.

When Smith stood up despite the wound, Cobb shot him four more times, according to the affidavit.

After that, Cobb and Jonathon Wood allegedly took a shotgun, .45-caliber handgun, ammunition and the safe to the apartment of female friends in Anderson. They were joined by Joshua Woods, according to court documents.

The group couldn’t open the safe, and called another person to help.

Cobb’s self-defense story was allegedly concocted while the group was still in Anderson. They returned to the duplex in the 6400 block of West County Road 300 South in Stoney Creek Township where Cobb called 911 and reported the shooting.

All three men are currently being held without bond at the Madison County Jail.

Find Stu Hirsch on Facebook and @StuHirsch on Twitter, or call 640-4861.

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