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Prosecutor Files Two Additional Charges Against Craig Wood

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- New charges have been filed in the case against the man accused of killing Hailey Owens. Craig Wood now faces rape and sodomy charges. Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson received a report from the Greene County Medical Examiner, which led to the charges. Wood is also facing first-degree murder and kidnapping charges.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. --  Craig Wood now faces rape and sodomy charges.

Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson received a report from the Greene County Medical Examiner, which led to the new charges.

In addition to these new charges, Wood is also already facing first degree murder and kidnapping charges.

It was on February 18 that ten-year-old Hailey Owens was snatched while walking just blocks away from her home.  Her body was found hours later at Craig Wood's home.

"I can tell you they're doing their best to take it in stride," says Trial Attorney David Ransin, who is representing the Owens family.  "They're very thankful for all the help from family and friends and especially the community-- because this is a crime that they realize affects not just them or their family, but the entire community."

According to court documents, individuals convicted of first degree rape are required to be sentenced to life in prison without eligibility for probation and parole until the defendant has served 30 years.  The same goes for first degree sodomy charges.

"I don't know that these charges actually will affect the trial overall," says Ransin.  "It's just additional information being gathered for everything that goes into the whole picture."

Criminal Defense Attorney Will Worsham is not involved in the case, but says it's common for prosecutors to file amended charges as a case progresses.

"The new charges obviously add a layer of complexity to the case," says Worsham.  "One that makes it seem more heinous in the fact that the victim appears to be allegedly sexually abused, raped and sodomized."

Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson has not yet decided whether he will pursue the death penalty against Wood.

Ransin says the Owens family has a long road ahead.

"They're going to be going through a roller coaster during this entire process," he says.  "And there's going to be periods of activity and gaps of nothing happening-- but each time there's an activity like the various hearings, it reopens the wounds.  So it's very dificult for them to deal with that."

Wood is scheduled to be back in court Thursday.

Also today, there was a hearing on House Bill 2248 in Jefferson City.  That bill, sponsored by Republican Representative Eric Burlison, aims to change the laws regarding the Amber Alert system and establishes "Hailey's Law."
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