FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) On November 14th, police responded to a shooting on Peger Road.
Ryder Alan Smith claimed that he had shot Peter Horace-Wright in self-defense.
Peter Horace-Wright was killed on Nov. 14. His family said that he was hard working and even graduated early. (John Dougherty/KTVF)
Last week, troopers charged Smith with murder, alleging that he had lied about the details surrounding the homicide. He was arraigned on Friday and pleaded not guilty to counts of first degree murder and evidence tampering.
"It doesn't take the pain away," said Bernadette Demientieff, Peter Horace-Wright’s mother.
“He had so much potential, and I feel like that was stolen. His son will live without a father, I will live without my baby brother, and my parents will live without their son," said Peter’s sister Angelica Frank.
His family described him as a hard worker who had come from nothing and was working to be something. They said he had struggles like anyone but he was kind and caring.
They said they had spent the day before Peter was shot at a funeral for an 11-month old niece.
“He was hurting that day. We spent it as a family, we spent it together. He was with us, we were all sad, we lost a baby... and that night we lost my brother. I am just thankful that I spent that whole day with him and we were all together,” Frank said.
The family said that since his death it has been hard, but they have seen lots of support from their community in Fort Yukon. They said they showed Peter honor with the funeral.
"My son's casket never touched a vehicle, they carried him, and that is an honor that they show to leaders and elders," Demientieff said.
And Peter’s mom said that Smith’s parents should support him but hold him accountable... and that, "I pray for them, and that is hard for me to say, but I do."
In the end, Demientieff said that she just wants justice for her son.
We reached out to Smith's family but have yet to hear back.
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