A 28-year-old North Bellport man was indicted Thursday on a murder charge in connection with the June fatal shooting of a neighbor, Suffolk County District Attorney Ray Tierney announced Thursday.
Shati Smith was extradited from Virginia on Wednesday where he had fled after the shooting, authorities said. He had remained in custody after his arrest June 21 as a "fugitive from justice," the result of a joint operation involving Suffolk homicide detectives, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Newport News Police Department, authorities said.
Smith faces a second-degree murder charge in the June 15 killing of his Post Avenue neighbor, Lee Houpe, also 28, according to a news release from Tierney's office.
At Smith's arraignment on the indictment Thursday, Judge Stephen L. Braslow ordered him held without bail or bond, the release said. Tierney's office identified John Halverson as the attorney representing Smith. Halverson was not immediately available for comment Thursday night.
On the night he died, Houpe, standing in a friend's driveway, "was approached by the defendant and shot multiple times. Smith allegedly got out of his car and started shooting at the victim hitting him three times," Tierney said.
After Houpe collapsed, "the defendant proceeded to stand over the victim shooting him an additional seven times, hitting him in the face, arm and chest, killing him. The defendant got back into his car and fled the scene," the District Attorney's office said.
Smith fled to Virginia but was eventually taken into custody there without incident, a Newport News police spokesperson said in June. He was returned to Long Island after waiving extradition, according to Tierney's office.