The 24-year-old UCLA grad student was alone at Croft House, a luxury furniture store on North La Brea Avenue, when Smith allegedly entered and creeped her out.
She texted a friend saying a man came in and gave her a “bad vibe,” according to LAPD Lt. John Radtke. Then he allegedly stabbed her to death in what police are calling a random attack.
The 31-year-old Smith has a criminal rap sheet with felonies in the Carolinas and California – and last year received probation in San Mateo in a plea deal after allegedly assaulting a cop, according to court documents obtained by Fox News Digital.
He had initially been charged with three felonies – assaulting an officer, resisting arrest and vandalism of $ 400 or more. Those charges were dismissed and he ultimately pleaded no contest to resisting an executive officer.
A judge placed him on probation on June 1, 2021, the documents show. By Nov. 30 the court revoked probation over Smith’s alleged failure to uphold the terms.
A judge issued a warrant for his arrest on the same day. That warrant is still active.
The documents also indicate Smith suffered from mental health issues.
Before Smith’s arrest for assaulting an officer, he was busted on Oct. 27, 2020, outside Home Depot allegedly in possession of stolen property. He was issued a citation and ordered to appear in court but the office of the prior Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey declined to prosecute, Covina Police Department spokesman Sgt. Joshua Turner told Fox News Digital.
Authorities and a group of donors is offering a $ 250,000 reward for information that leads to Smith’s arrest and conviction in connection with Kupfer’s death. Anyone with information is asked to call West Bureau Homicide at 213-382-9470.
Smith is described as a thin Black man, standing more than 6 feet tall, with short dreadlocks. Surveillance images show he was wearing dark-rimmed sunglasses with orange lenses and a white face mask. He had on a black, long-sleeved shirt, dark gray pants, and a dark backpack and shoes.
Police said he may be using public transportation and should be considered armed and dangerous. Authorities are urging anyone who encounters him to call 911 immediately and not confront him themselves.
He faces up to life in prison if caught and convicted.
Smith has an open case out of South Carolina in which he allegedly shot a flare gun into the back seat of another man’s car, where a toddler was sitting. He is currently out on bail in that case and adjudication has stalled due to coronavirus backlogs.
He has at least 11 arrests in Charleston stretching back to 2010, court documents show, as well as more in North Carolina and California – offenses that include assault with a deadly weapon, attacking police, shoplifting and trespassing.