VIDEO: Missouri Football Coach Abducted Then Murdered 10 Year Old Girl
February 20, 2014 1:49pm PST
Craig Michael Wood has been arrested for abducting 10 year old Hailey Owens, then shooting her in the back of the head and trying to discard her remains in trash bags. The 45 year old Missouri man is facing first degree murder, kidnapping, and armed criminal action charges for her death and is currently being held without bond after witnesses saw him snatch her off the street and toss her in his vehicle “like a rag doll.”
Hailey was walking home from a friend’s house in Springfield on Tuesday afternoon when Wood drove up in his gold 2008 Ford Ranger and asked her where Springfield Street was. As she turned to walk away Wood opened the door and said “Hey, come here a minute.” She took a couple of steps towards the truck and the Wood lunged from his seat and grabbed her, throwing her inside and then speeding off. He later shot her in the back of her head in his home.
Witnesses immediately called 911 and reported what they had saw, and resident Ricky Riggins jumped in his vehicle to give chase. “I could keep up,” Riggins told the Springfield News-Leader, “He was probably 5-6 cars ahead of me…it was so fast.”
When police arrived to arrest Wood hours after the abduction happened, they discovered him sitting in the front seat of his truck that was parked outside of his single story home. He had a roll of duct tape in his hands according to the police report, and he agreed to go down to the station for an interview. The truck is apparently owned by Wood’s parents, who have no connection to the abduction.
Wood’s father, Jim, told the newspaper that “he’s my son…and he’s in a lot of trouble.”
A search of Wood’s house turned up a spent .22 caliber casing in the basement of the home and Hailey’s body, which was stuffed inside two trash bags inside storage containers in the basement. According to police there was evidence that her hands had been bound prior to her death however other details are being withheld during the investigation.
The suspect didn’t have much of a criminal history, only having a possession of controlled substance charge and pleading guilty to illegal taking of wildlife, and authorities said that they can find no obvious connection between Woods and Owens.
Wood is a football coach for the seventh grade and a teachers assistant at Pleasant View School. The school superintendent, Norm Ridder, said that Wood had been employed by the district since 1998 and he passed their “rigorous background check,” which he noted was more extensive than other districts in the state.
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