Woodruff Released Without Bond in Ray County Despite Facing Felony Charges

Excelsior Springs resident, James Wayne Woodruff (65) who was arrested on June 5, 2023, and faces multiple felony charges including rape, possession of a controlled substance(s), and a misdemeanor charge of kidnapping was released from Ray County Jail without bond on June 20, 2023. Woodruff’s home was subject to a raid in June after allegations of illegal activity in his residence surfaced in late April 2023

During an interview with an inmate at Ray County Jail, on April 22, 2023, Sheriff Scott Childers learned that there was alleged drug activity, including marijuana, meth, and fentanyl, taking place at Woodruff’s residence. The inmate being interviewed also mentioned the presence of young girls in the home, with one possibly being “held against her will.”

The inmate interviewed by Childers stated that Woodruff was obtaining drugs for everyone in the residence and that she herself had been paid to engage in deviant sexual activities with Woodruff. During the interview, the inmate also described various sex paraphernalia owned by Woodruff.

The inmate recounted a specific instance when she came out of the bathroom to find that Woodruff had blocked the exit of his bedroom with a chair, confining her to the space. She said she felt pressured to have sex with Woodruff at that time due to his possession of guns and a history of violence, including allegedly punching another woman and breaking her jaw.

Based on this information, law enforcement officers, including Ray County Sheriff’s Deputies and Missouri Highway Patrol Troopers, executed a search warrant at Woodruff’s residence on June 5, 2023. Illegal drugs, including methamphetamine and opiates, were found, along with marijuana plants. Various sexual paraphernalia were also discovered matching the descriptions given by the inmate.

Following the raid, five separate interviews with five different women corroborated the allegations of prostitution and the exchange of drugs or money for sexual acts with Woodruff. These interviews provided further evidence for the charges that were brought against Woodruff.

The charges brought against Woodruff are as follows:

Count I: Rape in the Second Degree (Class D felony) Charge: Section 566.031, RSMo
Description: Woodruff allegedly engaged in non-consensual sexual intercourse with the victim identified as A.B. between March 1, 2023, and April 22, 2023, in Ray County, Missouri.

Count II: Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class D felony) Charge: Section 579.015, RSMo
Description: On June 5, 2023, Woodruff was found in possession of methamphetamine, a controlled substance, in Ray County, Missouri.

Count III: Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class D felony) Charge: Section 579.015, RSMo
Description: On June 5, 2023, Woodruff was found in possession of Fentanyl, a controlled substance, in Ray County, Missouri.

Count IV: Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class D felony) Charge: Section 579.015, RSMo
Description: On June 5, 2023, Woodruff was found in possession of Opium, a controlled substance, in Ray County, Missouri.

Count V: Kidnapping in the Third Degree (Class A misdemeanor) Charge: Section 565.120, RSMo
Description: Woodruff allegedly confined A.B. to his bedroom by wedging a plastic lawn chair under the door handle, with the intention of committing the crime of rape.

The potential punishment for these charges varies based on the classification of the offenses. For the class D felonies (Counts I-IV), Woodruff could face imprisonment ranging from one to seven years, or a fine of up to $10,000, or both for each count. If convicted of the class A misdemeanor (Count V), he could face imprisonment in the county jail for up to one year, a fine not exceeding $2,000, or both. (In cases where financial gain is involved, the fine may be double the amount gained from the commission of the crime, up to a maximum of $20,000.)

In the probable cause statement, Lieutenant Detective Andrea McElroy stated that she believes Woodruff is not only a flight risk but poses a potential danger to the citizens of the area. “I believe James Wayne Woodruff … is a danger to this victim and the community, due to his bringing in and supplying citizens of Ray County with illegal drugs and deviant sexually [sic] actions as well as eliciting violent tendencies towards women when they will not comply with his deviant sexual requests. I also believe Woodruff is a flight risk due to it being known that he has access to excessive amounts of money which he easily transfers to several different bank accounts.”

Apparently, Judge  Lori Baskins of the Ray Circuit Division felt differently as Woodruff was released without bond on his own recognizance on June 20, 2023. Woodruff is scheduled to appear in court on July 25, 2023, at 1:30 pm again with Judge Baskins at the Ray Circuit Division.

**The information presented in this article has been obtained from publicly available documents, including the Probable Cause Statement filed by the Ray County Sheriff’s Department and the official charges outlined in the Circuit Court of Ray County, Missouri Associate Division Complaint. Every effort has been made to accurately report the details provided in these sources.

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1 thought on “Woodruff Released Without Bond in Ray County Despite Facing Felony Charges”

  1. So just what DO you have to do before that judge will require bail for release??

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