A Chillicothe man whose murder conviction was recently overturned will remain behind bars for now. Platte County Judge Owens Hull, Jr., said Wednesday that he would not rule immediately on the defense’s motion to set bond in the Mark Woodworth case, according to KMZU’s Kristie Cross who attended the proceedings in Plattsburg.
Four witnesses, three family friends and Woodworth’s mother, were called to testify on Wednesday. Jackie Woodworth said that if her son is released on bond, he would work on the family farm. The court had determined that Woodworth is eligible to be released on bail, but the amount has not yet been set. Judge Hull is expected to announce his decision by Friday. A representative for the state requested that bond be set at $500,000 surety, with ten percent not allowed. Woodworth’s lawyer, Robert Ramsey, only asked that the amount be “reasonable.”
Woodworth has been serving a life sentence in the 1990 fatal shooting of his neighbor, Cathy Robertson. He was indicted by a grand jury in 1993, convicted two years later, briefly released after a successful appeal and again convicted in 1999. The case eventually made its way to the Missouri Supreme Court. The high court ruled in January that two former state prosecutors withheld evidence favorable to Woodworth’s defense. Woodworth’s conviction was subsequently vacated. However, the legal wrangling didn’t stop there. Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced, shortly thereafter, that the state would seek a third trial.
Robertson Family Statement:
Our family stands united in our pursuit of justice for the murder of our beloved Cathy Robertson. While we believe Mark Woodworth should spend his life behind bars for brutally murdering our mother Cathy Robertson and critically assaulting our father Lyndel Robertson in 1990 while they were sleeping in their bed, we are prepared to see a third trial through to conclusion.
The State of Missouri has proven twice, and will prove again through forensic evidence, that Mark Woodworth took his father’s gun from his home and brutally shot our mother and father. The State will again prove that no other person of interest had access to the murder weapon and the bullets used in this crime. The State will again prove that Woodworth’s own incriminating statements support the evidence that proves his guilt.
While we understand the judge is like to grant a bond today that his family can pay, we have state our opposition to his release on the record. We have also asked Judge Hull to consider requiring Mark Woodworth have absolutely no contact, intentional or unintentional, with any member of our family or any witness that may be testifying on the State’s behalf. We also asked that the judge fully consider the State’s request brought forth on the conditions of bond.
Since 1990, our family has lived through a a nightmare caused by Mark Woodworth. If seeking justice for the murder of Cathy Robertson takes a third trial and 100 years, we will do what it takes to hold Mark Woodworth accountable for his actions.