On October 4-6, 2003, just days before little Josef’s untimely death, Dr. Jayne Dubois, PhD. in Clinical Psychology with a specialty in domestic violence and abuse with families, directed a booth for weight loss at the Southern Women’s Show in Birmingham, AL. The Smith family attended the show and helped work this weight loss booth, and they stayed in the same hotel as Dr. Dubois in Birmingham. Long-time friends with the Smiths, Dr. Dubois also helped to organize the Fox News media shoot in the Smiths’ home in September (mentioned in a previous article). Dr. Dubois saw the eczema on Josef’s elbows and ankles during their time together, and she saw Sonya putting lotion on each child. The Smiths and Dr. Dubois were together for 10 long hours working at this booth at the Woman’s Show — and Josef was there as well. Dr. Dubois recalls Josef was so outgoing – he would walk around and visit, talking to everyone at the other booths. He was a happy child with no signs of pain…no signs of timidness…and no signs of any other pattern of abused children. Josef was doing better than ever with his behavior during this time. Thousands of people saw this child at the Southern Women’s Show, and no one saw marks on the body or an “abused child.”Dr. Dubois has known the Smiths for years and has even been an overnight guest in their home on occasion. Neglect, child abuse, and murder are the last words she would ever think to describe these loving, caring, outreaching parents who were always in the public eye, with up to 40 people in their home weekly for classes and often attending weekend church functions outside Nashville, TN.
September 6th and 10th, 2003: The Smiths open up their home for a two-day photo shoot on Friday the 6th from 10:00a.m. to 6:00p.m. and Tuesday the 10th in the evening from 4:00p.m. to 10:00p.m. for FOX NEWS Atlanta. They are filming a segment featuring Sonya Smith and her weekly weight-loss support group and Bible study. A full camera crew, many weight loss testimonies and class members, and many support people are in the home on these days. Little Josef was filmed reading the Bible. The Smith family is seen eating pizza, French fries, and chicken wings, and you see a neat home and a loving family. If these had been the abusive parents that the Prosecution tried to present, they would never have let a film crew in the home in this manner! The Smith family was an evangelistic family, and they had nothing to hide!
WATCH THESE VIDEO CLIPS! You will see a family with NO chronic abuse at all….but rather the opposite – parents who involve the whole family to better themselves and to look to God for everything – and a little boy having a great time at camp!
August 1st – 5th, 2003: The whole Smith family attended a church camp where there were 500+ other attendees. The children stayed in separate large cabins with assigned camp counselors. Camp was full of trained professionals, including Paramedics, at least 7 active R.N.s with a combined nursing experience of 100+ years, Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, Dietitians, School Counselors, School Teachers, and even a Fireman – all of whom would be required by law to turn in suspected child abuse at the risk of losing their license. As you see in the video, little Josef is active and energetic, and he has good behavior – nothing out of the ordinary for an 8-year-old boy. He is outgoing, active, and happy as he can be playing ball and dancing. NOTE that even while playing ball – a contact sport – he is participating fully with no signs of pain or discomfort. However, you do note him several times scratching his skin in various places…it is second-nature with his itchy eczema. One of our lifeguards at camp reported supervising Josef in the swimming pool, a pool filled with chlorine. Josef did not show any signs of pain or burning, so while the eczema was present (as seen with the scratching), it was not inflamed or oozing at this point in August. By the way, the lifeguard (as well as other camp participants, counselors, and adults) saw Josef in his swimming suit but saw NOTHING that indicated abuse, trauma, or anything suspicious whatsoever! Camp counselors watched little Josef jumping from bed to bed in his shorts and saw nothing more than what looked liked dark skin with keloids (a skin condition common in darker pigmented skin where scabs and scratches often leave lighter-color scarring). And again – Josef was not reclusive or shy – nothing that fits the description of “battered child syndrome.”
Click play below to watch a video of Joseph Smith sharing his testimony during a week of church camp in the summer of 2003. Hear Joseph share about his and Sonya’s weight loss, and see oldest son Mykel join him on stage as Joseph shares about what it means to truly love your family.
The entire family is being baptised together in Spring of 2003. The UPPER AND LOWER EXTREMITIES WILL SHOW THAT THERE IS NO REMARKABLE SCABBING OR BRUISING of any one in the family. Josef is so happy. He is jumping and giving big hugs with no sign of pain. The Smith family is delightful, and Joseph Sr. sings “Amazing Grace” and has the voice of an angel.
The video below was filmed on the day of Joseph and Sonya Smith’s incarceration. The music and lyrics the video is set to are by Michael Shamblin.
The information that you have read today would have moved a jury to vote “not guilty” on all counts. However, in February of 2007, while the jury did not find “premeditated murder,” the Smiths were convicted of manslaughter.
We are going to continue this legal process. We believe that mistakes were made, evidence was left out, and bias from media representation was prevalent before and during the trial. Perhaps facts could not be heard over the emotional appeals that were made by the prosecution. But we are not going to give up until the appellate process is over. We believe that the Smiths are innocent on ALL counts — we have all had much more time to look at all the evidence than the court had. Josef Jr. was diagnosed with the deadly Staph Aureus bacteria in the blood that causes death within 18 hours — case closed. The accurate diagnosis of his skin condition was Chronic Eczema and scratch marks. Quick research into this Staph bacteria lets you know how quickly it can act and how severe it can be.
The Smiths know that they are in God’s hands and that good will come from this. Their faith is an inspiration to all, even though the family is currently separated. Again, the jury simply did not get the full picture of everything that happened, and that is what the appellate process is for.
More articles, video clips, and information regarding the trial process will be coming soon to this website, so please check back often for the latest information…