Stuart S. Smith, for many years the federal government’s chief spokesman on crime statistics, died last week of multiple myeloma. He was 78. Smith covered the U.S. Supreme Court for the Baltimore Sun before joining the Justice Department in 1971 as a speechwriter, the Washington Post reports. More recently, he handled media affairs for the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). Smith had been president of a chapter of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees at the Justice Department.
BJS director Jeffrey Sedgwick said that Smith “was a source of inspiration and role model for decades of employees” at the Office of Justice Programs, which includes BJS. “He was a very gifted man.” Andy Goldberg, chief steward of the union local that Smith headed, said his “friendship, leadership, and knowledge were amazing. In both his professional and union capacities, he served the employees and this agency with distinction. He never hesitated to defend employees who
needed him, and he was our friend.”