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Thread: Christopher L. Collings - Missouri Death Row

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    Christopher L. Collings - Missouri Death Row


    Rowan Ford


    Christopher L. Collings


    New revelations in the murder case of nine-year-old Rowan Ford

    Nine year old Rowan Ford was killed in November 2007. Her body was found in a cave in McDonald County, Missouri a week after she was reported missing from her Stella home.

    Rowan's step-father, David Spears, and his friend, Christopher Collings, are charged with the child's rape and murder.

    Prosecutors say the men killed Rowan to cover up her abduction and rape.

    On Thursday prosecutors filed information regarding circumstances that would allow a jury to recommend the death penalty. In the motion prosecutors allege Rowan was not Christopher Collings' only victim.

    According to court documents Collings also engaged in inappropriate sexual behavior with another girl.

    Trials for both men are set for this year.

    http://www.koamtv.com/Global/story.asp?S=14053758

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    Alleged killer in Rowan Ford case wants death penalty off the table

    Attorneys for a murder suspect in Missouri try to take the death penalty off the table.

    The trial begins this week in Rolla, Missouri for Christopher Collings, accused in the abduction, rape and murder of nine year old Rowan Ford in November 2007.

    A week after Ford was reported missing her body was found in a mine shaft in McDonald County.

    Today Collings' attorneys filed a motion to prevent the state from seeking the death penalty.

    http://www.koamtv.com/Global/story.asp?S=14381717

  3. #3
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    Jury Selection Today For Accused Rowan Ford Murderer

    Jury selection starts Thursday for Chris Collings, one of the men charged with killing Rowan Ford.

    The 9-year-old was brutally raped and murdered in early November 2007. Ford's body was found in a cave in McDonald County, Missouri a week after she was reported missing from her Stella home,

    Her stepfather, David Spears, is also charged with her death. Both men are facing the death penalty.

    Jury selection is set to begin today for Collings. But as of 11 a.m. it hadn’t.

    That’s because the judge was taking up a few motions, in particular a request by the defense to delay the trial, citing whether some specific statements made by the other defendant in this case, David Spears.

    On Monday, Collings' attorneys filed a motion to prevent the state from seeking the death penalty.

    Barry County Prosecuting attorney Johnnie Cox said that before jury selection begins, the judge will take up any current motions.

    KOLR/KSFX’s cameras aren’t allowed in the courtroom at this phase in the trial.

    According to reporter Jennifer Denman, Collings looks a lot different now than he does in the photos you’ve seen since the case began.

    Today he’s dressed in a shirt and tie, obviously looks a little older, and now has long brown hair.

    It’s been more than three and a half years of court proceedings that brings us today.

    At this point, it sounds like jury selection should begin this afternoon.

    Attorneys say selection is an art that can sometimes take days.

    Attorneys say they will seek impartial jurors from Greene County.

    They will look at body language as well as stuff like job history, whether their married or whether they’re a governmental employee.

    KOLR/KSFX spoke with Dee Wampler who is not on this case, but offered some insight on jury selection.

    “You want to know what kind of a juror you think will be listening to your client,” he says. “You want someone for instance if you have a young man your representing you may want more woman on the jury or if you have a young woman who is a defendant you may want more men because men are sometimes more protective of woman."

    Wampler also says he will sometimes tell a joke during jury selection. He says a laughing juror less of a convicting juror.

    Opening statements are slated for Monday. At that time, more family is expected to arrive.

    Spears’ trial is set for August.

    http://ozarksfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=435426

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    Continuance granted in first Rowan Ford murder trial

    A Phelps County judge has granted a continuance in the capital-murder trial of Christopher L. Collings, one of two men accused of raping and killing 9-year-old Rowan Ford of Stella in 2007.

    Circuit Judge Mary Sheffield granted the continuance today in response to a motion filed by attorneys for Collings, 35, of Wheaton. Jury selection had been scheduled to begin today in Rolla, where the case was moved on a change of venue from Barry County.

    The defense sought the continuance this week, claiming they had not had sufficient time to prepare for relatively new evidence prosecutors have indicated they intend to present.

    The judge reset the jury selection in Phelps County for April 20-22, with opening statements and the presentation of evidence and testimony now set for April 25.

    Collings and Fords stepfather, David W. Spears, 28, are being tried separately on charges of having raped and strangled the girl, whose body was recovered from a sinkhole in McDonald County. Spears is currently set for trial in August in Pulaski County. The state is seeking the death penalty in both mens cases.

    http://www.joplinglobe.com/local/x12...d-murder-trial

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    Jury Selection Begins Today For Accused Rowan Ford Murderer

    Jury selection will begin Wednesday for Chris Collings, one of the men charged with killing Rowan Ford.

    The trial was supposed to begin April 7. However, after the defense argued it didn't have enough time to prepare against last-minute evidence presented by the prosecution.

    Nine-year-old Rowan Ford was brutally raped and murdered in early November 2007. Her body was found in a cave in McDonald County, Missouri, a week after she was reported missing from her Stella home.

    Her stepfather, David Spears, is also charged with her death. He and Collings are both facing the death penalty.

    Collings' attorneys filed a motion earlier this month to prevent the state from seeking the death penalty, but that issue wasn't what pushed back jury selection.

    Instead, it was a motion by the defense regarding specific statements made on audiotape by the other defendant in this case, David Spears.

    You'll recall that in February, a judge denied a request to keep taped confessions from both trials.

    The first video showed Collings saying he raped and strangled Ford. The second focused on Collings maintaining he acted alone.

    The day jury selection began, the defense also raised concerns about changes to some evidence being allowed in Collings' trial.

    The defense claimed it was not prepared to proceed with the trial. So before jury selection could begin, a judge pushed the trial to April 20.

    At the last minute, jurors had to be re-called. About 225 of them will be called back this week.

    The prosecution had to scramble to call its witnesses -- some were coming in from out of state -- to let them know about the delay.

    The defense refused to comment. Prosecuting attorney Johnnie Cox opened up about the delay.

    "A lot of time and effort has gone into the preparation, and we were prepared," he says. "At this point, we will just have another two weeks to finish preparations and tie up loose ends and things like that."

    KOLR/KSFX's cameras won't be allowed in the courtroom at this phase in the trial. You can follow Jennifer Denman on Twitter for live updates from the day's events.

    Spears' trial is set for August.

    http://ozarksfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=441087

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    Mistrial declared in Chris Collings case

    The trial of a southwest Missouri man accused of raping and murdering a nine-year-old girl will not go ahead as scheduled on Monday.

    The judge in the case has declared a mistrial in the case involving Christopher Collings, according to Phelps County Deputy Circuit Court Clerk, Jill Cooksey.

    Collings and David Spears are accused of the rape and murder of Rowan Ford in November of 2007.

    Spears was the girl's stepfather.

    Collings faced a possible death penalty in trial that has now been called off.

    The girl's stepfather, David Spears, faces the similar charges.

    A judge delayed Collings' trial last year after his attorneys unsuccessfully argued a taped confession should be thrown out as evidence.

    We'll continue following this story for an explanation on why the mistrial was called and any details about a future trial.

    http://www.ky3.com/news/ky3-collings...,2858679.story

  7. #7
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    Justice delayed is justice denied for little Rowan Ford... Hope this scumbag and her stepfather both rot in Hell. They both deserve the DP, and it should be carried out in the quickest time, just to send a message to others that it's NOT okay to do this to a child.

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    Hearing set for delayed murder trial

    A Phelps County judge has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday, May 3, to determine how to proceed after a mistrial she declared Saturday in the rape and murder charges pending against Christopher L. Collings.

    Circuit Judge Mary Sheffield granted defense motions for a mistrial and a second change of venue when jury selection for Collings trial in Rolla ran into difficulties last week.

    Court docket entries show that 45 potential jurors remained from a pool of about 200 people after questioning by attorneys with respect to jury duty hardship, pretrial publicity and qualifications for hearing a death-penalty case.

    The slim remaining number of potential jurors qualified to hear the case prompted Collings attorneys to seek the motions for a mistrial and a change of venue.

    The trial of Collings, 36, in the 2007 rape and murder of 9-year-old Rowan Ford, of Stella, already had been moved to Phelps County from Barry County on a change of venue because of pretrial publicity. The other defendant in the case, Fords stepfather, David W. Spears, 28, is set for trial in August in Pulaski County.

    But the problems with jury selection in Phelps County do not bode well for the prospects of seating a jury in the stepfathers case; Pulaski County is west of Phelps County and closer to Southwest Missouri, where the abduction, sexual assault and killing of the girl took place.

    The judge in Collings case must decide from which venue a new set of potential jurors will be called and where the trial will be held. The judge could have jurors chosen in another judicial district and taken to Rolla to hear the case, or she could order that the trial be moved to the judicial district where she decides jury selection should resume.

    http://www.joplinglobe.com/local/x14...d-murder-trial

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    UPDATE: Chris Collings Jury Selection Moved to Feb 2012

    Jury selection is set to begin February 27, 2012, for a man accused of raping and murdering 9-year-old Rowan Ford.

    Last week, a judge ruled that Chris Collings would not stand trial the day proceedings were expected to begin.

    Barry County Prosecuting Attorney Johnnie Cox said the judge granted a mistrial after attorneys could not agree on a jury.

    Court documents show a change of venue has been ordered.

    Collings is one of two people charged with killing and raping of Rowan Ford in early November 2007.

    Her stepfather, David Spears, is also charged with her death. He and Collings are both facing the death penalty.

    The trial was originally supposed to begin April 7. However, the defense argued it didn't have enough time to prepare for last-minute evidence presented by the prosecution.

    The new start date was set for Monday, April 25.

    Attorneys met with the judge on Tuesday to decide the best way to proceed with the case.

    It was decided that a Platte County jury would be brought to Rolla for the 2012 trial.

    http://ozarksfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=448867

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    Jury Selection Begins Monday for Christopher Collings

    After four years of trial delays, jury selection begins again for the trial of a man accused of raping and killing a 9-year-old Stella girl in 2007.

    Christopher Collings is charged with the death of Rowan Ford. She was brutally raped and murdered in November 2007. Her body was found in a cave in McDonaldCounty a week after she went missing from her home.

    "It was like yesterday, to everyone else life goes on, but to us neighbors who look at the house my front door faces her front door you look at the house and remember and the pain and the things that child went through," recalls neighbor Alicia Blevens.

    Collings is one of two men charged with First Degree Murder, Forcible Rape, and Statutory Rape of Ford after she was kidnapped from her Newton County home.

    Collings is facing the death penalty. Last May, a judge granted a mistrial after attorneys could not agree on a jury. A change of venue had been ordered.

    Jury selection for the case begins Monday morning in Platte County. It's happening there because the case is expected to be less known than in southwest Missouri. Jurors will be sequestered and brought to Rolla.

    The court is working to keep information secure in this case. In December, the court decided to change the court security level by limiting information that is posted on the Internet, to prevent jurors from researching the case. This limit will remain in place until all the jurors are sequestered.

    The trial is expected to begin Monday, March 5 in Phelps County. The prosecutor says Collings has to be tried first, because of certain evidence in the case.

    http://ozarksfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=609012

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