Derek Smyer, 31,/ 27-year-old Crystal Taylor
Man charged in decade-old murder of pregnant girlfriend
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
LOS ANGELES (KABC) — The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has announced an arrest in a chilling decade-old murder case.
Derek Smyer, 31, has been charged with the murder of 27-year-old Crystal Taylor and their unborn child.
Smyer allegedly hired 30-year-old Skyler Jefferson Moore to shoot Taylor after she refused to abort her pregnancy. Taylor was shot Sept. 25, 2001, in the carport of her Hawthorne apartment.
“He [Smyer] elicited the murder. He hired the other shooter to kill Crystal, so he’s been charged with accessory to murder and solicitation and actually with the murder. He did not want to be a father so he wanted to get rid of Crystal and the baby,” said L.A. County Sheriff’s Department Detective Dave Coleman.
Moore is already serving a life sentence for an unrelated murder and has also been charged in Taylor’s murder.
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According to the DA’s Office:, In August 2001, Smyer allegedly became upset when he learned his girlfriend was pregnant and refused to have an abortion. Smyer allegedly arranged for Moore to kill Crystal Dejuanna Taylor, who was four months pregnant. Taylor was fatally shot on Sept. 25, 2001, in her Hawthorne apartment. “
Moore, who is serving a life without parole sentence for an unrelated murder, and Smyer are charged with Taylor’s murder and the murder of her unborn fetus. Prosecutors will decide later whether to seek the death penalty.
Deputy District Attorney’s Danette Meyers and Kimberly Abourezk are assigned to prosecute the case.
Moore and Smyer are scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 18 at the Airport Superior Court, Department 144.