An appeals court has rejected defense arguments that a teen-ager who bludgeoned to death a 4-year-old boy was not given a fair trial because his attorney was incompetent.
Eric Smith, convicted of second-degree murder in the 1993 slaying of Derrick Robie in Savona, is serving a prison sentence of nine years to life.
The jury cast aside defense attorney Kevin Bradley's contention that Eric, then 13, was not criminally responsible because he suffered from "intermittent explosive disorder," characterized by uncontrollable violent impulses.
Late Tuesday, the Appellate Division of State Supreme Court turned down without comment a request for a new trial.
The trial judge ruled in August that Bradley had provided adequate legal representation.