Posted on | February 19, 2014 | 82 Comments
Craig Michael Wood, 45, has been charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping in the death of 10-year-old Hailey Owens, whose abduction Tuesday led to an “Amber Alert” that rallied the community of Springfield, Missouri:
According to the probable cause statement in the case, Carlos and Michelle Edwards were in the open garage of their home Tuesday afternoon about 4:45 when they saw a young girl with a cellphone in her hand walk by, westbound on Lombard.
The couple witnessed a tan Ford Ranger driving eastbound stop near the girl, and heard the driver ask where “Springfield Street” was.
Michelle Edwards said the girl . . . turned to walk away from the vehicle before the driver opened the door to the vehicle and said, “Hey come here a minute.”
Owens took a step or two toward the truck before “the male then lunged out of the vehicle, grabbed the girl with his left hand and threw her into the truck ‘like a rag doll,’” the probable cause statement said.
The suspect then fled the scene quickly.
With a description of the vehicle and a tag number, police moved quickly, but not quickly enough to save Hailey:
Authorities believe Wood . . . abducted her from a Springfield street in the daylight hours Tuesday, took her to the basement of his home and shot her in the back of her head.
There was also evidence that her wrists had been tied, according to the probable cause statement used to file charges. . . .
Authorities said Owens, 10, was found in two garbage bags inside a plastic storage tote. The entire basement allegedly smelled of bleach.
Also found in the basement, the statement says, was a spent .22 caliber shell casing.
The scariest part of the story? The girl’s killer had been employed by the Springfield public school system since 1998.