Jackson County woman pleaded guilty to killing accused rapist

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JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. – A Jackson County woman who killed a man accused of raping her, has pleaded guilty to murder.

Brittany Smith was sentenced to 20 years, court records show.

Our news partners at AL.com report the sentence was split for her to serve 18 months in the Jackson County Jail and 18 months on house arrest. Because she will receive credit for the time she spent in jail awaiting trial, Brittany will be released to house arrest in about seven months, according to her attorney.

She pleaded guilty to killing Todd Smith, an acquaintance, in the kitchen of her home in Stevenson. It happened early on the morning of Jan. 16, 2018 — just hours after Brittany said Todd raped and strangled her.

The case was set for trial next month.

Her attorney said the plea deal was hatched through discussions with Jackson County prosecutors.

“In any case, you’ve got to weigh what you know and can control with what you can’t,” Attorney Ron Smith said in a phone interview with AL.com. “We have no control over a jury or a judge that would sentence her.”

If the case went to trial and Brittany was convicted, she would have faced up to life in prison.

Brittany argued at a Stand Your Ground hearing earlier this year that she killed Todd in defense of herself and her brother, Chris McCallie. She testified that when her brother came over to confront Todd about the rape, the men fought. She told a judge that she fatally shot Todd while he held her brother in a headlock and threatened to kill them all.

Holt denied Brittany’s request for immunity from prosecution under Alabama’s self-defense law, saying she had not proven that the killing was legally justified.

That decision set off a series of appeals. Brittany and her lawyers unsuccessfully urged the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals and the state Supreme Court to overturn Holt’s Stand Your Ground ruling. The defense also lost appeals to have Holt removed from the case, alleging she was biased against Brittany. The judge denied those allegations.

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