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Widow of Columbus' 100th murder victim: 'He was in the wrong place at the wrong time'

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Octavia Smith learned emergency responders near her east Columbus home were for her husband, 42-year-old Ulrich Smith, who'd been fatally shot. (Courtesy: Octavia Smith)

Octavia Smith said she heard sirens and choppers outside her east Columbus home around 9 p.m. Tuesday.

Soon after, she learned those emergency responders were for her husband, 42-year-old Ulrich Smith, who'd been fatally shot.

Smith's murder marked the 100th homicide of the year in Columbus.

"He was in the wrong place at the wrong time," Smith said.

Investigators said Smith was shot near East Fifth Avenue near the James Road ramp west of Steltzer Road. Loved ones said Smith had gotten off a COTA bus after visiting a friend, then made a quick stop at a corner store. He was making the short walk home when he was shot, according to his wife.

Police said witnesses called 911, and ran to help the father of two, when they spotted his body.

"They found him lying halfway on the sidewalk, and in the street, shot in the heart," Smith said.

Explaining what happened to the couple's young children is impossible.

"He has two kids. My daughter barely knows him. My son is missing him," she said.

Police said Smith was pronounced dead around 9:30 p.m. at Grant Medical Center. They have no motive, nor a suspect in the case.

Smith was a tissue and organ donor according to loved ones.

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