Man charged with murder of woman found in Ste. Genevieve motel

Curtis Smith
Curtis Smith

STE. GENEVIEVE, MO (KFVS) - Murder charges have been filed after the November death of a woman found dead in a Ste. Genevieve motel.

Curtis Smith, 52, is charged with first degree murder in the death of Kristi Murphy, 53, of Columbia.

Murphy was found dead in a bathtub at the Microtel Inn and Suites in Ste. Genevieve on Nov. 17, 2012.

Smith is currently behind bars in Bonne Terre, serving a life sentence for murder in the 2nd degree.

At the time of Kristi Murphy's death, Smith was out on parole.

Smith's bond is set at $250,000.

Smith is due court on March 5, 2013 in Ste. Genevieve County.

According to the Probable Cause statement, Smith called in Murphy's death as a suicide.

Investigators now believe Smith strangled Murphy with a shower curtain, and then staged a suicide.

Curtis Smith spent more than 20 years behind bars for killing a 17-year-old Minnesota girl back in 1984.

He was released from prison on parole in 2010.

Look for a special I-Team report on this story Thursday on Heartland News at six.

Copyright 2013 KFVS. All rights reserved.