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Smith-Wadsworth Convicted of Murder and Criminal Possession of Weapon

District Attorney

Christopher Smith-Wadsworth, 32, of Schenectady, was found guilty after a jury trial in Schenectady County Court on April 19, 2024 of Murder in the Second Degree and Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree in connection with the death of Sutlesh Girdharry of Schenectady (DOB:  11/18/97), on January 1, 2022, on Curry Road in the Town of Rotterdam.  The case was tried by Christina Tremante-Pelham and Nicolaus McDonald on behalf of the Schenectady County District Attorney’s Office. Kevin Luibrand represented the defendant.  The trial was held before the Honorable Matthew J. Sypniewski.

            The convictions arise from an altercation that took place during the early morning hours of January 1, 2022, in front of a residence on Curry Road.  At that location some friends and family members had been celebrating the New Year when people who had left the party after an argument returned in one car, bringing with them others in a second car.  A fight broke out between some of the people at the party and some of those who were in the cars.  Mr. Smith-Wadsworth was found guilty of using a knife to stab the unarmed Mr. Girdharry multiple times, causing his death.  Smith-Wadsworth was free on bail during his trial but was taken into custody following the jury’s verdict. He now faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced on June 25, 2024.

            District Attorney Robert M. Carney stated, “I am very proud of the work of my trial team in this case who overcame obstacles to a conviction including the fact that no one at the party knew or could identify Mr. Smith-Wadsworth and some of those that could, his friends in the cars, were less than fully cooperative.  The defense put forth by Mr. Luibrand was that Smith-Wadsworth was justified in using deadly physical force.  In the end, the jury concluded that Smith-Wadsworth had brought a knife to a fistfight with an unarmed man and delivered a sequence of lethal plunging stab wounds to Mr. Girdharry’s forearm and then his neck, both of which severed arteries, and were in no way justifiable under the circumstances and proved that his intent was to kill.”