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What Happened at 12610 West Bayaud Avenue?

LakewoodColoradoUnited States

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  • January 10th, 1984

    Serial killer bludgeons Lakewood woman with hammer When her daughter was divorced in 1983, 50-year-old Patricia Louise Smith moved with her daughter and her two young grandchildren to a Green Mountain townhome. She wanted to help them adjust from their rural existence in Oshkosh, Neb. to the more fast-paced lifestyle in a big metropolitan area. It wasn’t an unusual gesture by the self-sacrificing Smith. Her daughter Chery (Sherry) Lettin, then 29, considered her mother her best friend. The cheerful, loving woman was adored by her 6-year-old granddaughter Amber Reese and her 4-year-old grandson Joe Reese. The woman, who never spoke a harsh word brightened all of their lives at a very traumatic time. She wasn’t just staying for a short time either. Smith left her farm semi-permanently while her husband, Oliver Henry Smith, kept his Nebraska government job. Smith started her own home interior design business. Her husband would often visit on weekends. Smith, her daughter and two grandchildren rented a townhome at 12610 W. Bayaud Ave. in Lakewood. After 3 1/2 months they had established a routine. Smith and Lettin would drive Amber to school for Kindergarten and Joe to a church day-care center. Smith would then drive her daughter to a bus station on 6th Avenue and then drive to work. In the evening the process was reversed. Smith was very punctual and dependable. She always was waiting for her daughter at the bus station. But on the evening of Jan. 10, 1984, she wasn’t there. That was very odd. Chery waited and waited. She called her mother’s home phone repeatedly but no one answered. It got dark and cold. Finally Chery called her cousin Valerie, who picked Chery up at the bus station. Together they rushed to the church daycare, where she picked up both of her children after a friend took Amber there after school let out. When they drove into the driveway of the townhome, Lettin saw flickering reflections on her mother’s upstairs bedroom window. It was apparent the TV was on. Her mother’s car was in the driveway. It was very strange. It was 6:15 p.m. If her mother was home why hadn’t she gone to the bus stop to pick her up. “Something had to be very wrong,” she said. Chery and her cousin and the two kids climbed out of the car and the two kids ran down a narrow walkway to the front door and impatiently waited for their mother to unlock the door. The two small kids jostled into position in front of their mother, each hoping to burst into the home and run to their grandmother first.


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  • Last updated 6 months ago
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