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Teens’ killing suspect worked on embassy buildings

Published 10:22am Thursday, November 29, 2012

LITTLE FALLS, Minn. — A Little Falls man charged with murdering two teenagers who apparently broke into his home on Thanksgiving Day had a job that involved overseeing technical security issues for U.S. embassies.

Byron Smith was a security engineer for the U.S. Department of State. He retired six years ago.

Retired State Department political officer William Davnie tells Minnesota Public Radio News ( that security engineers oversee construction and repair work for U.S. embassy buildings and consulates. They do not patrol grounds like security officers, but instead focus on technical issues such as building layout and alarms.

Davnie says security engineers are “security conscious” people, and work to protect buildings so spies and terrorists cannot break in.

Smith, 64, is charged with killing 18-year-old Haile Kifer and her cousin, 17-year-old Nicholas Brady.

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