Oregon resort death: Records suggest reclusive childhoods

PORTLAND, Ore. — A Washington state woman accused of killing one daughter and wounding another appears to have raised them without sending them to school or day care, or filing a homeschool request, court and school records show.

Jessica Smith, 40, was charged with aggravated murder and attempted aggravated murder after the killing and attack in a hotel on the Oregon coast.

She and her husband, Greg Smith, were divorcing after 17 years amid a custody dispute.

He hadn’t seen the girls since April and was to be reunited with them on Friday, when a housekeeper found the body of the 2-year-old girl and the severely wounded 13-year-old. She had surgery and is expected to recover.

The couple had lived in Goldendale. The Oregonian reports Greg Smith’s divorce filings say his wife “didn’t really allow the kids to get out in Goldendale” and did not let the family interact socially with his co-workers and their families.

The elder daughter was in Goldendale since at least age 8. But she did not enroll in schools there, according to Lori Hackbarth, executive assistant to the Goldendale superintendent.

Neither daughter attended private school or day care, according to the account of family expenses Greg Smith filed in court.

The family did not file a petition with the Goldendale school district to homeschool the girl, as Washington rules require annually, but it is possible the girl was taught at home anyway, Hackbarth told The Oregonian.

After Jessica Smith left the family home in Goldendale and moved the girls to Vancouver in April, she did not register the older girl to attend school there, said district information officer Gail Spolar. Jessica Smith chose an apartment in a gated complex.

Court records show Greg Smith worked six days a week at two full-time jobs, as a radiology supervisor for four 10-hour days at the Klickitat County health clinic and then Saturdays and Sundays at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital in Hood River.

He was granted custody of the girls on Fridays, the one day he had off.

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