Ivins man charged with killing wife after she allegedly said she was leaving him

An Ivins man was charged Monday with murder in the shooting death of his wife.

(Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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IVINS, Washington County — A southern Utah man was formally charged Monday with shooting and killing his wife after she allegedly told him she was leaving him.

Steven Timothy Smith, 59, of Ivins, is charged in 5th District Court with murder, a first-degree felony.

Just before 6 p.m. Friday, police were called to a report of a shooting at an Ivins residence. "While en route, dispatch informed responding officers that the complainant stated that Steven Smith shot his wife after being told that she was leaving him," according to a police affidavit.

Shawntell Smith was shot several times and pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.

Witnesses told officers they heard gunshots from inside the house and then saw Steven Smith walking away into another room, the affidavit states. "The witness then fought with Steven Smith, during which Steven Smith stated that 'I'm done, I have nothing else.'"

When police found Smith, they reported that he had "blood on his hands."

Smith told police he was angry with his wife. He said he left his house to withdraw a large amount of money, then went back to his house and "told anyone that was not family to leave the residence," the affidavit states. He claimed he does not remember what happened next.

Police said there were teenage children inside the home at the time of the shooting.

In a GoFundMe page set up by family members, Shawntell Smith's sister says she is still trying to process the news.

"Things like this happen on the news, not in real life. Shawntell is one of the most Christlike people I know — which does bring some comfort knowing she's with Him, our brother Jesus Christ," the sister posted on the page.

Despite feeling some peace that she "will see her again," the sister wrote that she will still miss Smith.

"Our chats until wee in the morning, cheesy movies together, nature walks, her laugher, service, cooking together, music, her love for family, especially for her kids who are now without both parents. Please keep her kids in your prayers."

A woman who says she is a neighbor of the Smiths posted on Facebook that her bishop gave a prayer the next day to help everyone affected by the tragedy.

"Please pray for my dear friend's children. My kids all grew up with them and not only did they lose their mom, they also lost their dad. What I do know is that her children know her love for the Savior and her testimony of the gospel. She lived it and shared it. We love and will miss you Shawntell."

*KSL.com does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisers and otherwise proceed at your own risk.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the KSL.com team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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