It appears a Chillicothe man â€” Mark Woodworth - has won his appeal on a Livingston county murder case dating back to the 1990â€™s. Woodworth, convicted of murder, assault, burglary and armed criminal action for the killing of his neighbor Katherine Robertson and the serious assault of her husband Lyndelâ€” sought relief from the Supreme Court of Missouri.
A special master the Court appointed to review
the case determined that the state withheld material, favorable evidence from the
defense. This violates the stateâ€™s duty (under Brady versus Maryland) to disclose all
The special master found the lack of disclosure of this evidence was prejudicial and, in combination with other recently discovered evidence, made the verdict in the prior trialâ€”quoting the special master--not worthy of confidence.
The appeal was argued October 4th before the Missouri Supreme Court.
In a 6 to nothing decision announced today, Judge Laura Denvir Stith wrote the Supreme Court of Missouri adopts the masterâ€™s findings, orders that Woodworth's convictions be vacated and orders him discharged from the stateâ€™s custody within 60 days of the date the mandate is issued; unless within that time, the state elects to re-try him in the circuit court system. There is a 31-page document describing the Woodworth case, the determinations made by the special master, and the unanimous opinion of the Missouri Supreme Court to overturn the verdicts.
The summary is available to view online at:
The Courtâ€™s decision is available online at: