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Following arrests, friends of slain Littleton woman reflect on her life and love for others

Kanokwan Nok Smith.jpg
Posted at 11:09 PM, Oct 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-06 13:52:21-04

LITTLETON, Colo. — On Friday, law enforcement announced new arrests in the death of a Littleton woman gunned down inside her home.

Kanokwan "Nok" Smith was shot and killed by her husband, Scott Smith, inside their Littleton home on W. Ottawa Avenue on Nov. 1, 2020, according to police.

Scott Smith told investigators that he acted out of self-defense. At the time, officers said they didn't have enough evidence to hold Scott Smith on criminal charges. Court documents revealed he had filed for divorce 11 days earlier.

Nearly a year later on Sept. 24, Scott Smith was once again arrested and this time booked on first-degree murder, tampering with physical evidence and domestic violence charges.

On Friday, Scott Smith's mother, Theresa Rino, was arrested, too. Rino is charged with accessory to crime, attempt to commit tampering with physical evidence and conspiracy to commit tampering with physical evidence.

"I don't understand how you could do this to her. She was an incredibly sweet woman," said Melissa Weesner, a friend of Nok Smith.

Those who knew and loved Nok Smith say, these are the answers they've been waiting for.

"We know her, and we loved her and we wanted her to have justice," Weesner said.

Weesner knew Nok Smith for nearly eight years from working in cosmetology in various Denver-based salons.

"She had a lot of clients. They loved her," she said

The former colleague also spoke of Nok Smith's work ethic and love for others.

"Almost every night after she was done working incredibly hard in her salon, she would go up there [to Blackhawk] and be a dealer," she said.

Weesner said she had others struggled to grapple with the circumstances. At the time, neighbors in the area also told Denver7 they doubted Scott Smith's story to investigators.

Those who knew and loved Nok Smith hope to keep her memory alive for the community and for Nok Smith's young daughter, now left without her mom.

"She was just one of the most genuine people that you will ever have met," Weesner said.