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Friday, February 28, 2014

Hailey Owens case: New Judge for Craig Wood (photos, videos)

Craig Wood is every defense attorney's worst dream, as he was literally caught, red-handed at the scene where Hailey Owens' murdered body was found. Hailey Owens was abducted by a man who fit Wood's description, driving the vehicle he used and that was registered to his parents, and whom several eye-witnesses reported seeing pull Hailey Owens into his vehicle on Feb. 18, 2013. It was his basement where
Craig Wood
investigators found the 10-year-old's body stuffed in two garbage bags then placed inside a storage container. A pool of blood was at the bottom of the container. Police detected the stench of bleach outside the home, on Wood's clothing and throughout the basement area. When authorities arrived to question Wood, he was pulling into his driveway and was holding a roll of duct tape. Authorities took him for questioning and he had what appeared to be blood on his clothing.

How anyone plans to defend Craig Wood remains to be seen, but it is doubtful this will be another "Jose Baez" case. While many were shocked that Jose Baez successfully defended Casey Anthony and won her acquittal, the truth is he had a lot to work with. There was virtually no physical evidence in the Casey Anthony case or the death of Caylee. By the time Caylee Anthony's remains were located, there was no way to determine how she died. This gave Jose Baez room to "create" "craft" or "come up" with a suitable defense. Of course, Baez would say he only told the truth in the case, but you see my point. There is no "breathing room" for Wood's defense attorney to "create" "craft" or "come up" with another scenario.

This appears to be an open and closed case.

Hailey Owens Candlelight Memorial March (videos, photos)

While there is current debate underway as to whether Wood's alleged million dollar trust fund should prohibit him from using a public defender, we know one thing: There is a new judge in the case. Last week, Greene County Associate Circuit Judge Dan Imhof presided over Wood's first appearance, but Judge Imhof has removed himself from the case. Associate Circuit Judge Jason Brown is now handling the case.

Hailey Owens
Hailey Owens' abduction and murder has shaken the residents of Springfield, Missouri and the nation to its core. This was a case of "stranger danger" in its truest form. What is more heartbreaking is that there were people who witnessed the attack, tried to stop the suspect, and police located the suspect at his home. The murder happened so quickly, one wonders if anyone could have truly prevented it.

Some feel the Amber Alert system failed and when a child is abducted it's natural to ask what could have been done differently.

While many want to point fingers and blame, the ultimate truth is the blame needs to be placed on the person who orchestrated this attack. While suspects are innocent until proven guilty, there is already so much evidence against Wood, that authorities didn't wait for any confirming, scientific evidence before arresting him.

Could an Amber Alert have saved Hailey Owens sooner? In my best guess, I think the only thing that would have made a difference would have been if Wood's had been the registrar of his vehicle rather than his parents. Should his have been the address that first showed up, authorities would have found him sooner. It seems to me that time was lost due to the fact authorities had to go through his parents in order to find him.

But ultimately, there is only one person to blame for the death of Hailey Owens, and that is the man who abducted and murdered her.

Craig Wood was scheduled to return to court on March 19 and April 7, but now that there is a new judge presiding, those hearings will be rescheduled.

Click here for Photos, Videos and Twitter Updates in the Hailey Owens Case

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