Trio involved in deadly shootout near Hadley Park pleads guilty

Tuesday, September 13, 2011 at 6:13pm

Three men involved in a deadly mid-afternoon shootout on Albion Street in July pleaded guilty Monday to felony weapons charges.

Finis Lewis, Quinten Smith and Corey Lynn Smith, all of Nashville, pleaded guilty to charges stemming from their roles in the shootout near North Nashville’s Hadley Park at 2:45 p.m. on July 11.

According to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Lewis, 33, pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, as well as illegally possessing a firearm with an obliterated serial number. Quinten Smith, 26, pleaded guilty to illegal firearm possession after being convicted of domestic violence. Corey Lynn Smith, also 26, pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and making false statements to federal agents. 

Authorities said on July 11, two groups of individuals in two different vehicles encountered each other on Albion before firing more than 100 rounds of ammunition from at least four separate caliber firearms at each other.

Clarence Claybrooks, 33, of Nashville, died as a result of the shooting. Lewis and Corey Smith were also shot during the gun battle.

Federal agents as well as the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department are continuing to investigate the shooting.

"This violent gunfight endangered people who were in their homes or enjoying one of Nashville’s parks,” U.S. Attorney Jerry Martin said in a statement. “Federal agents and Metro officers worked diligently to obtain extremely speedy results, which will keep these defendants in custody for illegally possessing these firearms. The investigation into this incident continues, and we welcome any information which will identify any one else who was involved.”

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, nearby occupied homes on Albion were hit by gunfire, as well as an occupied vehicle during the assault. Police said after the shootout, in which all of the defendants fired all of the ammunition in their weapons, Lewis threw the gun he used over a fence and onto the property of a daycare center.

At the time of the shootout, Lewis was out of jail on a $125,000 bond while he awaited a trial next February on drug and weapons charges. In 2009, a grand jury indicted Lewis and Quinten Smith in the August 2008 shooting death of Kenneth Crawley. Lewis was also indicted in 2009 for another man’s murder that occurred shortly after Crawley’s death.

Neither of the cases would stick for prosecutors, however, as witnesses later refused to cooperate.

A sentencing hearing is set for Lewis, Quinten Smith and Corey Smith in December during which time Chief U.S. District Judge Todd Campbell is to decide whether to accept the plea agreements. Those agreements recommend 80 months in prison for both Lewis and Corey Smith, and 36 months in prison for Quinten Smith.

Each sentence is to be followed by up to three years of supervised release. All three defendants remain in custody, without bond, pending that sentencing hearing.

The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives continue to investigate the shootout. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sunny A.M. Koshy is representing the government in the case.