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  1. #1
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Craig Michael Wood - Missouri Death Row








    Football coach charged in Missouri girl's death


    By The Associated Press

    Missouri police say they are confident they have found the body of a 10-year-old girl abducted a day earlier from in front of a neighbor's home, and a local elementary school coach is being held on suspicion of murder in the case.

    Springfield police said they suspect 45-year-old Craig Michael Wood forced Hailey Owens into his vehicle as she was walking home around 5 p.m. Tuesday.

    Wood, an athletics coach at Pleasant View K-8 School, is jailed on suspicion of first-degree murder in the girl's disappearance.

    Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams announced Wednesday that "a young female body" was found inside the suspect's home.

    "While she has not been positively identified, we have a high degree of confidence that it is our victim, Hailey Owens," Williams told reporters, adding that a cause of death has not yet been determined.

    Wood, whom Williams described as uncooperative, has a criminal record of drug charges. Williams noted that Wood has no known violent past, saying, "Nothing related to something like this at all."

    "It's tragic, it's horrific," Williams said. "It can happen to anyone, anywhere, in a blink of any eye."

    Wood was arrested late Tuesday inside a vehicle parked outside his home, Williams said. Formal charges have not been filed.

    Witnesses told police that Hailey was taken by a man in a pickup truck Tuesday evening. The abduction triggered Amber Alerts in Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma.

    Wood works as an athletics coach at Pleasant View K-8 School, Springfield Public Schools Superintendent Norm Ridder said in a statement Wednesday. Wood has been employed by the school district since 1998. His employment has been suspended, "until this matter is resolved," Ridder said.

    It is not known whether Hailey, a student at Westport Elementary School, knew Wood or had any previous contact with him.

    "I offer my support to Hailey's family and to our SPS community," Ridder said. "Students and staff at three of our schools are coping with this situation. To support these school communities directly impacted by this tragedy, I have assigned additional counseling staff and school police officers to be on hand until further notice.

    "We are fully cooperating with law enforcement officials as their investigation continues," he said.

    Witnesses say a man grabbed Hailey from in front of a neighbor’s home and drove away in a gold 2008 Ford Ranger Tuesday afternoon. The suspect drove down the street several times before approaching Hailey and pulling her into his truck around 5 p.m. Tuesday, according to witnesses.

    Dozens of officers conducted an extensive search that continued throughout the night, the Springfield News-Leader reported, citing a police news release.

    Wood was arrested at a home a little more than 5 miles from where Hailey was kidnapped.

    Hailey is 5 foot, 2 inches tall, about 90 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. She was wearing jean shorts and purple sandals.

    Hailey's mother, Stacey Owens, told the Springfield News-Leader that the fourth-grader was returning home from visiting a friend when she was abducted a couple of blocks from her home.

    The girl's aunt, Erin Petersen, said she wanted to do anything she could to help find her niece.

    “She’s a very lively, bubbly, sweet little girl. She’s spontaneous, very innocent,” she told the newspaper. “I’m in shock right now. I feel like I need to be productive to find my niece.”

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/02/19...pect-arrested/
    Last edited by Helen; 02-19-2014 at 02:52 PM.
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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    Coach Charged With First Degree Murder For Hailey Owens Death

    Craig Michael Wood, 45, of Springfield, Missouri, has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of 10-year-old Hailey Owens, an official said Wednesday. If found guilty, Wood could face the death penalty.

    Police said they believe the body found in Craig Michael Wood's Springfield home is that of Hailey Owens, who allegedly was abducted in that city Tuesday afternoon.

    The body has yet to be positively identified, police said.

    An Amber Alert was issued after at least one witness told police that a man pulled Hailey, of Springfield, into a gold Ford Ranger on Tuesday afternoon, CNN affiliate KMBC reported. She had been walking to a friend's house, KMBC reported, citing her relatives.

    Following an unspecified lead, police went to Wood's home on Tuesday night and, after he drove up to the residence, took him in for questioning. Investigators found the body in a search of the home overnight, and Wood, 45, was arrested on a preliminary murder charge, police said.

    It wasn't immediately clear whether Hailey knew Wood.

    Since 1998, Wood has been employed by Springfield Public Schools, working as a paraprofessional and athletic coach at Pleasant View K-8 School, according to a statement from the schools. He has since been suspended.

    Hailey was a student at Westport Elementary School. She attended Bowerman Elementary School last year.

    "Last night we learned the terrible news that one of our students had been abducted near her home. This morning, our sadness is compounded by the recent developments in the case of Hailey Owens' abduction," said Superintendent Norm Ridder.

    He added: "Students and staff at three of our schools are coping with this situation. To support these school communities directly impacted by this tragedy, I have assigned additional counseling staff and school police officers to be on hand until further notice."

    http://www.wibw.com/home/headlines/O...246078651.html
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  3. #3
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Such a horrible story. The only consolation is that it happened in a DP state.
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  4. #4
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    Springfield MO Middle School football coach Craig Michael Wood charged in abduction and murder of Springfield, Mo., girl

    Imagine the horror parents feel today that this monster coached their sons football?

    St. Louis Today
    reports a middle school football coach was charged Wednesday with first-degree murder in the death of a 10-year-old girl who was snatched off a street just blocks from her home in southwestern Missouri as several residents watched in horror.

    Craig Michael Wood, 45, also faces kidnapping and armed criminal action charges, according to Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson, who filed the charges late Wednesday afternoon.

    Wood is accused of kidnapping fourth-grader Hailey Owens in Springfield as she walked home from a friend’s house Tuesday evening.

    Patterson said the girl had been shot in the head.

    Wood was inside a truck parked at his small, single-story home in Springfield when police arrested him Tuesday night.

    A probable cause statement released Wednesday said that Wood was holding a roll of duct tape when officers arrived and that the girl’s body was found stuffed inside two garbage bags in a basement where the floor was still damp from bleach.

    Authorities will not officially confirm that the body is Hailey’s until after an autopsy, but Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams said “we have a high degree of confidence” in the preliminary identification, which indicates that it is the girl.

    http://thelasttradition.blogspot.ca/...-football.html
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  5. #5
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Accused Missouri girl's killer to plead not guilty, says attorney

    SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A middle-school football coach accused in the kidnapping and killing of a 10-year-old girl in southwest Missouri plans to plead not guilty, his public defender said in a brief hearing Friday.

    Craig Michael Wood, 45, is accused of snatching Hailey Owens as she walked home from a friend's house Tuesday evening in Springfield. Neighbors said they watched in horror as Hailey, just two blocks from her home, was pulled into a pickup truck that quickly sped away.

    Court records indicate her body was found in Wood's basement, stuffed into trash bags and plastic containers. Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson said Hailey was shot in the back of the head and had ligature marks on her wrists, suggesting she was tied up.

    An autopsy is pending.

    At the brief Friday morning arraignment, public defender Chris Hatley said Wood plans to contest the charges of first-degree murder, kidnapping and armed criminal action in the fourth-grader's death.

    Wood appeared via video from the Greene County Jail, where he is being held without bond. He spoke only briefly to answer several questions from the judge. Hailey's parents, older brother and five other family members also attended.

    Assistant prosecutor Todd Myers challenged Wood's use of a public defender after he said police found evidence of a $1 million trust in Wood's name.

    "I think he can afford his own attorney," Myers said.

    Hatley replied that he appreciated the prosecutor's concern for Wood's rights but that "it's frankly none of his business."

    Circuit Judge Dan Imhof said he would consider the matter. He scheduled a follow-up court appearance on March 19 and a preliminary hearing on April 7, according to CBS affiliate KOLR.

    Wood was a 16-year football coach at a middle school in Springfield, about 160 miles southeast of Kansas City. He also worked as a substitute teacher and teacher's aide overseeing suspensions.

    Police said they found Wood holding duct tape as he left his father's pickup truck parked outside his home Tuesday night, just hours after Hailey went missing. Court records indicate the floor of the basement where the girl's body was found was still damp with bleach — presumably used to clean the crime scene.

    Patterson has said he would consider seeking the death penalty.

    Wood had little criminal history, according to online court records. He pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance in 1990 in Greene County and was fined $100. Wood also was convicted in 2001 for illegal taking of wildlife, a misdemeanor. Friends said Wood is an amateur musician and avid hunter.

    Police spokeswoman Lisa Cox said there is no indication that Wood is a suspect in any other violent crime involving children.

    At least three people told police they saw the pickup truck drive back and forth along the street before the driver stopped to ask Hailey directions, then he dragged her inside the vehicle. One homeowner gave chase on foot and another in his car.

    KOLR reports that Wood remains jailed without bond.

    Family and friends recalled a child who loved to laugh, smile and dance.

    "She was pure gold," said her aunt, Sara Wells.

    Gary Tew, principal at Westport Elementary School, said Hailey was a "happy-go-lucky kiddo" who made sure new students felt welcome and belonged to an after-school club that taught character lessons through a local church. He said he last saw her on Valentine's Day, recalling her enthusiastic dancing at a class party.

    Thousands are expected to attend a candlelight vigil in her honor Saturday night.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/accused-...says-attorney/
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  6. #6
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    Child porn found at coach's home in girl's killing

    A police search of the southwest Missouri home of a middle-school football coach accused in a 10-year-old girl's kidnapping and death found child pornography and more than a dozen guns, according to search warrants released Friday.

    Officers retrieved a three-ring binder containing pornographic photos of young children at the home of Craig Michael Wood, the documents released by Springfield police say. Investigators also seized computers, cameras, 30 video recordings, handwritten journals, a spent .22 caliber shell casing and a hat believed to have been worn by fourth-grader Hailey Owens.

    Wood is accused of snatching Hailey as she walked home from her best friend's house this week, just two blocks from her own home. Neighbors said they watched in horror and unsuccessfully gave chase as Hailey was pulled into a pickup truck that sped away.

    At a brief hearing Friday, Wood's lawyer said he plans to plead not guilty. Wood appeared via video from the Greene County Jail, where he is being held without bond. He spoke only briefly to answer several questions from the judge. Hailey's parents, older brother and five other family members also attended.

    Court records released earlier as well as the search warrants indicate her body was found in Wood's basement, stuffed into trash bags and plastic containers. Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson said Hailey was shot in the back of the head and had ligature marks on her wrists, suggesting she was tied up. A preliminary autopsy is complete but won't be released publicly because the criminal case remains open, according to the county medical examiner's office.

    Patterson said he is considering whether to seek the death penalty.

    http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/v...irl-s-killing-
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

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  7. #7
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Past of man suspected of killing Springfield girl holds few clues

    Single. White male. No children.

    In those ways, the man prosecutors say abducted and killed a 10-year-old southwest Missouri girl this week and terrified a community fits the profile of predators who commit such crimes.

    But not everything about Craig Michael Wood fits the stereotype and studied profile of that type of criminal, according to an extensive study completed in the past decade.

    He’s older — the typical age of a child abductor is around 27, nearly 20 years younger than Wood. No one decides at age 45 to step out and grab a child off the street, said a retired FBI criminal profiler. There’s a slow buildup to it, she said.

    Wood also reportedly used a gun to kill his victim, while nearly 90 percent do not. And he had steady work for nearly two decades, yet one more anomaly.

    From the outside, he was a normal, caring and compassionate man who appeared to be living a normal life. That’s why family and friends are so puzzled, wondering if there’s more about Wood that’s still a mystery.

    “There was never ever a side of him that would ever indicate something like this,” said Loren Morris, a friend of Wood’s for 30 years who once played alongside him in a local bluegrass band named Uncle Fudd. “I just can’t describe it. It’s eating all of us up.”

    Wood, 45, sits in the Greene County jail, without bond, charged with kidnapping and first-degree murder in the death of Hailey Owens, a fourth-grader known to help her classmates and who loved to dress up. He'll make his first court appearance at 8:30 a.m. Friday.

    Prosecutors say Wood — a teacher’s aide in the Springfield School District and middle school football coach — pulled alongside the fourth-grader just before 5 p.m. Tuesday as she walked near her home after visiting a friend.

    Witnesses say he grabbed her and threw her in his truck “like a rag doll” and sped away, eluding a neighbor who tried to follow him in his vehicle, according to court records. About 31/2 hours later, police found him at his home across town. Inside that home, officers were hit by a stench of bleach.

    Hours later, they found a young girl’s body stuffed in a plastic storage tote. It was Hailey.

    One expert sees a message in how the killer disposed of her.

    “To victimize a child in such a cold-blooded way and discard her like she was an object — he’s hiding her and he doesn’t want her to be found,” said Mary Ellen O’Toole, a retired profiler who spent more than a decade in the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit helping solve high-profile cases and study the killers. “To me, I question whether he has any remorse or feelings for this little girl based on what he did to her.”

    That’s why those who know Wood said they struggle to believe he’s capable of this crime. And experts who have studied child killings say there’s reason for that.

    Though Wood fits a few broad characteristics, the man who coached middle school boys in football, had strong friendships from high school and remains close with family is not the typical suspect accused of kidnapping and killing a child.

    “Most of them exhibit weak social bonds to conventional contexts, relationships, and activities — strong predictors of involvement in crime,” authors wrote in a 2006 study conducted by the Department of Justice and the state attorney general for Washington.

    Even though there’s nothing in court records to suggest the suspect had been violent toward children before, there’s a possibility there may be a trail nonetheless, said Kathleen Heide, a criminology professor at the University of South Florida who has done research on offenders who have committed sexual homicides.

    “Usually it is not that somebody gets the idea that has never offended before and snatches a child off the street,” Heide said. “Usually there’s a process. That’s what makes this scary." Disbelief settles in.

    Loren Morris’ cellphone rattled with the Amber Alert Tuesday evening. Like everyone in the Springfield area, he learned about Hailey and how a stranger had kidnapped the little girl just a block or two from her home.

    Who could do this?

    That’s what went through his mind, never thinking that in a few hours police would be in his friend’s driveway arresting him. The man he’d known most his life as a good person from a great family would soon be viewed by most as a monster.

    By Wednesday morning, Wood’s name was released as the suspect. But still, friends thought it must be another Craig Wood.

    “Honestly, most of us would not believe it was him until we saw the picture,” said Morris, referring to long-time friends and band members.

    That suspect in the photo splashed on TV was the same guy who plays mandolin in Uncle Fudd. The guy Morris had just seen a few weeks ago at the band’s practice. And the friend he graduated with from Marshfield High School in 1986.

    “He was a fun-loving guy,” said Morris, a former member of Uncle Fudd and whose brother is still part of the band. “There was never anything for us to get upset about. When we’re together we almost always talk music. ... Music and teaching, coaching football, that’s what he loved.”

    In December 1992, Wood graduated from then-Southwest Missouri State University with a degree in psychology and minor in criminal justice studies, a university spokeswoman confirmed. He’s been a middle school football coach since 1998 and full-time teacher’s aide in the Springfield district since 2006.

    Family friends described his parents as “salt-of-the-earth.” He has one brother who is married with children, but Wood never married and did not have children, friends said.

    His parents, Jim and Genie Wood, bred cattle and fox trotter horses on their farm near Ash Grove. Wood has helped them with chores, friends said, and even showed one of their fox trotters at a 2007 competition. He earned fifth place in an amateur division.

    The Woods have hired attorneys Dee Wampler and Joseph Passanise to serve as their spokespersons during this process. In a statement released Thursday evening, the attorneys said the Woods are cooperating fully with law enforcement.

    “This unexpected incident involving their son, Craig, has been a shock and they are grieving,” the statement read. “They join the rest of the community praying as their hearts pour out to the Owens family.”

    Craig Wood’s only criminal history dates back more than a decade. Missouri court records indicate he pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance in 1990. He was convicted in 2001 for killing wildlife out of season.

    Court records related to the 1990 conviction reveal Wood acknowledged he had struggled with alcohol in the past, according to reporting by the Springfield News-Leader.

    He told officials at a court-ordered drug education program that he had experienced 40 to 50 blackouts by the time he was 22, the paper said.

    Friends and family, though, say they never noticed a problem.

    “It’s easier to think we saw this coming,” Morris said. “But no, we didn’t. ... All we can think about is the girl and her family. We don’t know the guy who did this. It’s just somebody we don’t know.”

    Is there a past?

    Only 10 percent of child abduction killers are older than 40, according to the Justice Department study.

    So it’s no wonder that police agencies in southwest Missouri wonder if there’s anything else in Wood’s past.

    In the hours after Wood’s arrest, Springfield-area police agencies began checking files to see if his name popped up in other investigations or if there were any similar unsolved cases.

    “That’s one of the first things I checked, to see if we had anything,” said Ash Grove Cpl. Jacob Marler. “Any prior contacts? But nothing. Cold cases of ours with him as a suspect? No we do not.”

    In the 2006 study, almost half of the child killers analyzed had a substantial history of crimes against children before they killed their victim.

    Experts say investigators will try to learn if there is something in Wood’s background that hasn’t been revealed yet. They likely will construct a timeline of his activities starting in his teen years, in part to see where he has traveled.

    It would be highly unusual for a man his age to commit this impulsive act without having a history of risky behavior, the experts said.

    “You don’t have this kind of behavior that you can turn off and on like a light switch,” said O’Toole. “No one just snaps for no reason whatsoever and goes out and kidnaps a 10-year-old girl, takes her somewhere and then kills her. And then they morph back into being a normal, everyday person.

    “That doesn’t happen.”

    http://lakeexpo.com/news/top_stories...a4bcf887a.html
    Last edited by Helen; 02-25-2014 at 04:35 PM.
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  8. #8
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    Suspect in girl's kidnapping, slaying, held away from other inmates

    The man accused of the kidnapping and homicide of a 10-year-old Springfield girl is being held in Greene County Jail alone and under close watch, jail staff said Tuesday.

    Major Kevin Spaulding confirmed that Craig Michael Wood is being held apart from the general jail population.

    Spaulding described it as “house alone, rec alone, close watch, three officer warning status.”

    He further clarified that the “three officer” status means anytime Wood needs to be moved within jail walls, three corrections officers have to accompany him.

    That has complicated an already understaffed system, Spaulding acknowledged.

    “We are and have been for a long time understaffed and way over capacity so, yes, any additional workload is one more burden to our system,” Spaulding said.

    “The dedicated men and women who do the heavy lifting every day are really the ones to be commended.”

    Wood is charged with first-degree murder, armed criminal action and child kidnapping in the death of Hailey Owens.

    Spaulding said inmate housing is constantly evaluated and could change.

    A recent change in Wood’s case is the judge who will preside.

    At this point in criminal proceedings, either side of the court case can ask for a change of judge. No reason has to be specifically given.

    Wood’s attorney, public defender Chris Hatley, asked that the case been moved from Judge Dan Imhof’s courtroom. No reason was given in the motion.

    The case is now set before Judge Jason Brown. Online court records do not yet note when the next hearing in the case will be.

    Previously planned had been a court appearance to discuss having a public defender in the case. The prosecution called using public funds for Wood’s attorney improper because Wood is believed to be tied to a $1 million trust.

    That hearing will now likely be rescheduled.

    http://www.news-leader.com/article/2...nclick_check=1
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  9. #9
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    Opinion

    Death penalty for Wood?

    By JOHN BEAUDOIN
    The Kansas City Star

    I was shuffling through one of my many boxes of ‘stuff’ a few days ago (looking for my passport, which I successfully located) when I ran across a bevy of old writings.

    Short stories and other creative writing I authored in junior high, poems, position pieces, and those "papers" we all had to do in junior high and high school. One such handwritten paper was on my opposition to the death penalty. It was written in 1988.

    Growing up, I fiercely opposed putting prisoners to death. Re-reading this paper, I was reminded why, at the time, I had such ardent resistance to it. Killing our prisoners, I reasoned, put us in some pretty awful company around the world. The vast majority of countries do not practice the death penalty on its prisoners. And, if we were to lead by example, we shouldn’t either.

    In high school and college, I supported the efforts of Amnesty International, writing letters to foreign countries. I did then and still believe in the work that group does to shine a light on international countries that do not share our beliefs in human rights.

    Over the years, though, it has been harder and harder to support a 100 percent, no death penalty stance.Groups like the Innocence Project, too, have put the spotlight directly on our justice system, helping free at least 18 people from Death Row since 1992. People that were wrongly convicted. This, too, back in 1988 was a concern outlined in my paper. Then, there was Pamela Butler in 1999. The sweet little girl rollerblading her way through the neighborhood, innocently enjoying her childhood when a monster named Keith Nelson took that away.

    Nelson was convicted and sentenced to death for her rape and murder. Of course, he still sits on federal Death Row, where he has been since 2002. He’s been awaiting his execution longer than Pamela Butler had on this earth. There is just something patently wrong with that. Now, 15 years later, we have an eerily similar case with a girl the same age and in a circumstance that is just too awful to fathom.

    Hailey Owens lost her life Feb. 19, likely at the hands of another monster, Craig Michael Wood.

    In 1988 I couldn’t imagine strapping these two to a chair in our old gas chamber and flipping the switch to initiate the toxic fumes.

    After following the Butler story and driving to the church field where she was murdered in 1999, I was so disgusted I think my views even then started to change.

    Now with a daughter by my side, and reading the report on Wood and his alleged acts against a little girl, I can’t find my way to letting him live. I just simply cannot. Much consternation around the death penalty filters from the amount of time it takes (see Nelson) to actually exact the justice.

    The hosts of a local radio talk show, “Dana and Parks” on 98.1 KMBZ have coined the phrase, "If we know, you go" when referring to death penalty cases, a nod to some sort of compromise on cases where we do not have iron-clad proof of the killer. Otherwise, in their view, inject them and get it over with.

    Anymore, I really don’t care if a Keith Nelson or, if he’s guilty, Craig Michael Wood can be rehabilitated or ever contribute something to society.

    I don’t want to sound cold or heartless, but in these types of cases, 2014 John just cannot agree with 1988 John. The deaths Pamela Butler and Hailey Owens were just too painful to think otherwise.

    http://www.demo-mo.com/2014/02/28/24...-for-wood.html

  10. #10
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    Lawmaker Seeks Swift Justice for Heinous Acts Against Children

    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- One Missouri legislator wants swift justice for Hailey Owens.

    The piece of legislation he is proposing, in part, revolves around the Greene County Prosecutor pursuing and getting the death penalty as a punishment for Craig Michael Wood.

    Wood is charged, but not convicted, in the kidnapping and death of 10-year-old Hailey Owens on Tuesday, Feb. 18.

    Police say they found the girl dead in Wood's home, just hours after eyewitnesses saw him grab her off the street.

    The Florida legislature enacted a similar law in 2013.

    The Missouri version focuses on someone who both kidnaps and murders someone.

    The law shortens the amount of time from the end of their appeals to the time of their execution.

    "For an absolute loss of an angel's life,” says Missouri State Senator Dan Brown. “It was a heinous crime, a heinous act and I hope justice is done swiftly and completely."

    Brown says the last week in Missouri shows justice moves too slowly for the state's youngest victims.

    Brown points to the case of 15-year-old Ann Harrison.

    "Michael Taylor was finally executed this week,” says Brown. “It's nearly 25 years that he sat on death row. She was abducted, raped and murdered when she was 15-years-old, 25 years ago."

    Brown says things should be different for the man accused of kidnapping and murdering Hailey Owens, a crime that has caught national attention.

    "I felt that we needed to do something to streamline or address this issue of folks dragging out appeals for years and years," says. Brown.

    Brown modeled his bill on a Florida Law enacted in 2013.

    "In Florida this legislation was called the Timely Justice Act,” says Brown.

    The bill limits the amount of time that can pass from the date of the offenders last failed appeal to the execution.

    Brown says this does not shortchange the defendant’s right to appeal.

    "The person that has done the act is going to get his day in court,” says Brown. “All of his appeals he will get. Nothing is cut short. What we're doing is tightening up the time frame."

    Brown says criminals need to know where the state stands on this issue and Hailey's family deserves swift justice.

    "I want Hailey's mother and Hailey's family to know the State of Missouri stands with them and we grieve with them," says Brown.

    Brown says he has considered calling this proposed legislation ‘Hailey's Law,’ but he also said he has no intention of contacting Hailey's family during their time of grieving.

    Brown also says it may take several years to enact this type of legislation, but he will not back down from the challenge.

    http://www.ozarksfirst.com/story/d/s...-U6St3L6UTFtkA
    </section>
    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

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