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Trial date set in doctor's murder-for-hire case

GREENWOOD — A Greenwood doctor and one other man are set to stand trial April 22 in a murder-for-hire plot that prosecutors say unsuccessfully targeted a local attorney.

The Greenwood Commonwealth reports the trial date was set this week in Leflore County during a preliminary hearing for Dr. Arnold Smith and Cordarious Robinson.

Smith pleaded innocent at a Monday arraignment, as did Robinson, who is charged with conspiring with Smith against Abraham.

Prosecutors said Smith hired people to kill attorney Lee Abraham, who represented Smith’s ex-wife in the couple’s divorce years ago.

Authorities say one of the suspected hit men was killed by law-enforcement officers in an April 28 shootout at Abraham’s law office in downtown Greenwood. Abraham was not injured.

Smith is charged with capital murder in the death of alleged would-be assassin Keaira Byrd, who was shot dead at Abraham’s office by an agent from the state Attorney General’s Office. Smith is also charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit murder and one count of breaking and entering by use of subterfuge or trick.

Robinson is charged with conspiracy to commit murder and possession of a firearm by a felon. He has been released on $120,000 bond.

Smith has been held without bail at the Leflore County Jail since his arrest on April 29, the day following the shootout between Attorney General’s agents, Byrd and another alleged assassin, Derrick Lacy. Lacy was wounded in the shootout.

The arraignment for Lacy, who is accused of working with Smith in a conspiracy separate from Robinson, will be rescheduled. An attorney for the prosecution told Special Circuit Judge Breland Hilburn that Lacy’s attorney, Alicia Thomas, did not receive notice of the arraignment.

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