VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – The jury trial for an accused killer in Virginia Beach began Tuesday as a jury was selected and parties made opening statements.
Darrius White is charged with aggravated murder for the Dec. 13, 2021 killing of Annie Smith. Prosecutors say that White and his brother, Michael White, robbed Smith’s husband, Steven Smith, as he pumped gas at Harris Teeter. They claim that Darrius White then grabbed a gun and shot Annie Smith three times as she sat in the passenger seat of the couple’s car.
White faces other charges, including robbery resulting in death, robbery using a firearm and three counts of use of a firearm in commission of a felony. He is also charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, but he will be tried on that count at a later date. Prosecutors nolle prosed, or set aside, a first-degree murder charge.
Jury selection lasted more than two hours – the parties seating a 12-person jury and two alternate jurors.
Smith took the stand, calmly describing a video from Harris Teeter surveillance video of the robbery and his wife’s final moments.
The video showed Darrius and Michael White pulling up on the opposite side of the gas pump from Steven. The two brothers were in a stolen gold Lexus sedan. Michael purportedly confronts Steven Smith, demanding his belongings several times while pointing a gun at his head, and Steven obliges. Once the confrontation seems to end and Steven gets into his car, Darius gets out of the Lexus, goes around the pump and confronts Steven himself. He then purportedly bends down and leans into the couple’s car, shooting Annie three times.
First responders said Annie was dead upon arrival.
Prosecutors said that about an hour before Annie’s killing, the brothers had stolen the gold Lexus from a Chesapeake neighborhood. They said that the brothers then drove the car to a 7-Eleven, where they cornered a woman in her car. Michael allegedly pulled a covering over his face, and knocked on her window, but she did not open it. The brothers then drove away and shortly after targeted the Smiths at the Harris Teeter gas station.
Prosecutors said that the brothers went to a hospital days after the incident, reporting feeling suicidal. They said that investigators interviewed the two, and admitted driving the stolen Lexus and encountering the Smiths.
Video from that interview, prosecutors said, will be played tomorrow.