Family, Attorney For Child Abuse Victim Protests Convicted Mother's Commutation Request

A Lincoln County father continued his fight for his daughter nearly two decades after her death. Kelsey Smith Briggs' mother was convicted in 2007 for enabling child abuse that led to the toddler's death. A sentence Raye Dawn Smith claimed was unjust and is requesting commutation.

Monday, June 3rd 2024, 5:06 pm

By: News 9, Jennifer Pierce


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A Lincoln County father continued his fight for his daughter nearly two decades after her death.

Kelsey Smith Briggs' mother was convicted in 2007 for enabling child abuse that led to the toddler's death. A sentence Raye Dawn Smith claimed was unjust and is requesting commutation.

The child’s father, her grandfather, and the Lincoln County District Attorney addressed the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board on Monday, one day before Smith's commutation hearing.

“Wish I could tell you how amazing my daughter was and how much she was loved and is missed,” said Lance Briggs, Kelsey’s father.

Instead, Lance Briggs had to recall the final months of his two-year-old daughter's life in five minutes.

“Kelsey died a long and painful death due to internal bleeding and blunt force trauma of the abdomen,” said Briggs.

Briggs read a statement to board members explaining why his daughter received a just-prison sentence of 27 years for enabling child abuse.

“Miss Smith lost custody of her daughter twice due to confirmed child abuse,” said Briggs. “I understand Miss Smith has been a model prisoner, but she was not a model mother and that was her one job.”

Smith now wants an early prison release for good behavior and her attorneys claimed Smith's sentence was excessive. The Briggs family disagreed.

“She was found guilty by a jury of her peers after all the evidence was heard,” said Royce Briggs, Kelsey’s grandfather. “And some in the jury thought she should serve life.” 

Kelsey's stepfather Michael Porter also received a prison sentence for enabling child abuse. Smith continues to deny involvement in her daughter's death.

“If she did not inflict any of this abuse then what she did was essentially hand a loaded gun to Michael Porter Junior, set Kelsey Briggs down range and turned her back and covered her eyes and waited for the outcome,” said Adam Panter, Lincoln County District Attorney.

Two pardon and parole board members asked Briggs and Panter several questions to gather more information for their decision on Tuesday.

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