Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The True Story of John Raymond "Woody" Woodring

Desperate Acts

When Bonnie got word that Woodring was served with the restraining order, she waited until he left their house and then went inside to grab some of her things. As she was packing, Woodring kicked the door in and threw her on the ground. As he began choking her, Bonnie's 13-year-old son ran next door to a neighbor's house. Woodring was aware the cops would be coming soon, so he jumped into his truck, smashed through the garage doors and fled the scene. The neighbor's 911 call was recorded:

OPERATOR: Jackson County 911. Do you have an emergency?

CALLER: Yes, um, our neighbors, the Woodrings, up here on Kitchens Branch...


CALLER: His son, her son, is down here saying someone is beating his mother. You need to get somebody up here.

By the time officers from the Sylva Police Department arrived, Woodring was long gone. He had choked Bonnie so badly that she required medical attention. An arrest warrant was quickly drawn up, and an APB was put out on Woodring's vehicle. A short time later, Woodring was pulled over by the police. However, he somehow managed to escape on foot.

A few days after the choking incident, on Sunday, September 17, 2006, Bonnie sent out the following email to a close family member:

"New news! I left woody, got a restaining order, he violated it by showing up at the house, tried to kill me by choking me, couldnt talk or swallow for 4 days (was in the ER). He commited a felony doing this, not sure right now about moving, as I have alot to settle and press charges and fix the house. He crashed his truck into the garage. We have been in the shelter to keep safe. [Redacted] saw it all and called the law from the neighbors. I have no phone except work [redacted] and this new email account right now. Will keep you posted. I am fine, I am strong do not worry about me too much..."

According to a source close to the investigation, Woodring called the Sylva Police Department on September 17 and agreed to turn himself in the following day. However, emails Crime Library reporter David Lohr later uncovered, which were exchanged between Woodring and Bonnie, suggest he had no plans of facing the charges and give an in-depth glimpse into Woodring's troubled mind.

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