Man charged with murder goes back to jail

Corey Smith

A man accused of the rape and murder of a woman with Down syndrome has been ordered back to jail after a mental evaluation.

Court records show that Corey Smith, who is charged in the death of Pat Burley and the beating of another mentally disabled woman, was ordered into local custody Dec. 5. The order says the mental competency of Smith has been restored.

Smith had not been transferred from a state mental facility back into the Richmond County jail as of Wednesday morning, jail staff said.

Smith is charged with murder in connection with the August 2010 death of Burley, a 55-year-old woman who was well-known in her Laney-Walker Boulevard neighborhood.

Investigators later linked Smith to the beating of another woman four months before the slaying. He is accused of beating the 57-year-old woman with a brick, then sexually assaulting her.

Assistant District Attorney Natalie Paine filed motions Dec. 7 notifying Smith’s attorneys that she plans to present that attack during the murder trial as a “similar transaction.” Paine also plans to seek the maximum sentence allowable because Smith already was a felon, records shows.

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