On January 18, 2011, the Sacramento Police Department was notified that the death of 57-year-old Sandra Smith was the result of injuries sustained back in 1954 and thus a homicide.
The Sacramento County Coroner's Office advised that on January 30, 2010 Sandra Smith had died from blunt force injuries to her head that she sustained in April of 1954. Smith's injuries in 1954 left her disabled and under long-term care since that time. Detectives had difficulty trying to find out what happened during the initial assault, the suspect information, and where the suspect currently was. To make it more difficult, at the time of the injuries, North Sacramento had its own separate Police Department so records were not available.
Detectives went to work and thought to check old newspaper articles from the time frame of the initial assault. Detectives found a Sacramento Union article dated April 19, 1954. The article indicated that six month old Sandra Smith had been taken to the hospital with injuries sustained by her father Andrew Dean Smith. Per the article, it was determined that Andrew Smith had hit his daughter until she was unconscious. It appears the father was arrested for the assault and convicted serving six months for the crime. Detectives were able to determine that Andrew Dean Smith died in 1980.