Derrick Lee Smith
My name is Derrick...
I'm a Scorpio, brown eyes, black hair, and I am a 200 pound light skinned, African American man... I came to prison in January 2008 after I was convicted of second-degree murder/involuntary manslaughter. My fiancé and I were leaving a movie theater after having just finished watching the movie "Hancock"with Will Smith and Charles Theron… It was pretty late in the night and as I was walking with my fiancée to our car,3 men came up to us and I thought they were to walk past us, and then they made verbal insults about us being an interracial couple and yelling the N-word and other bad things out of their mouths... And calling her a N-lover… I could not believe it! So, I said to her, let's just keep walking because I did not want to ruin our good night we were having, but then I looked at her face and saw in her eyes that she was hurting and shaking by the things they said to her and I could then see tears in her eyes and then, that couple together with them still harping on their words and everything… I could see that they were obviously drunk, I said to them, why didn't you guys just grow up!
They came at me and grabbed me and pulled a night out on her and while I was wrestling with the two, one hold a knife out on her and was going to stab her with it… I lost it, I smashed one guy in his eye with my elbow, drop the other guy after hitting in his throat and I ran to the other guy and I grabbed his arm time because he was being rough with her and had it aimed at her. I grabbed his wrist and while I was holding his knife arm in place, the other 2 guys crashed into me and we all fell down and I hit the guy in his lung, puncturing it.
They were arrested, my fiancée was taken to the hospital because she was shaken up by everything and I had been injured to and did not even know it… So after being treated at the hospital, we were released…3 weeks later, I was arrested by the Wayne County Sheriff's Department stating I was being charged with my crime because the man died! They use the fact that I was in military years ago to give "Special Circumstances" to bring the charges, and I know it was simply because after I got out of the Army, I became a felon instead of waiting or my benefits to kick in, I embezzled money and did other crimes, which is what allowed them to charge me as a habitual offender… So, I had a jury trial and they convicted me of an involuntary slaughter because I have a criminal history I am not proud of… I went to prison, I won an appeal and I am coming up for parole in a few years…
No man should ever insult a woman or hurt a woman and I know I was protecting my fiancée at the time, so I worked on becoming a better person while in here… Since I have been in prison for the past 8 1/2 years for protecting my fiancée and myself from some drunk racist who did not like the fact that we were an interracial couple, it really affected my outlook on life in different things… Since I came to prison for protecting my then fiancée and her not being able to stand by me through my sentence due to the fact that she wanted to get on with her life, and my son passing away by a drunk driver hitting him then, my mother passing away in 2011, I have really had a lot of opportunities to turn cold, and give into the desire to become a heartless man when I get out… But, that is not who I am and it is not what I want… And so, I was given something to help stay right and positive in here over these years… It was through the dog program and how it has helped me stay right. There are already enough evil, heartless, cold people in the free world that have beaten, tortured and hurt the dogs over the years and were just cruel and inhumane to the animals… I was able to see that I did not want to become that which I was becoming and so, when I was given the chance to be in the dog program, I felt something in my heart open up and I joined and I was given the first dog and I never looked back…
The dogs have helped me to see that there are people who are horrible and would hurt these tiny little animals and I hate that...So, when I and assigned a dog that is rescued from owners that have beaten them, abandoned them, mistreated them, even left them for dead, I just thank God that they are still alive and I am given a chance to help them to heal from their injuries...There is nothing greater then being able to see a dog that is frightened at the very sight of being with a stranger, get to not only eat, and drink and exercise but to get that old spirit back in her body, and bringing that old spirit back is something that really makes me smile, because I know that I am able to help these dogs to get healty again, and restrain them to be able to be adopted by a family who will love them, that really helps me to be a better man and makes me feel good knowing I was able to help that dog...The hardest part is after 6 weeks with the dog, I have to let htem go...that hurts the most...but, I work hard on it and try to do the best I can and then when I'm given a new dog I get the chance to help another dog out again, and that really makes me feel good...it makes me happy...So, instead of being hardened by a cold heart, and the bad thing this place has done to me, I am able to do something good and be a better human being, and so with that, I am proud to say that it was a dog that saved me...I wanted to share that with you and I hope that your able to read it and enjoy it...The dog program saved me...and so, when I get out, I will be a better man, and be able to stay the good man, I was prior to my coming in here...Write me and tell me what you think...
Derrick Lee Smith # 267009
EC Brooks Correctional Facility
2500 S Sheridan Drive
Muskegon, MI 49444 USA
Ad Start: 10/28/15