Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
News Archive

Springfield Citizens Recognized for Attempts to Help Hailey Owens

Carlos and Michele Edwards, alongside Police Chief Paul Williams, at Tuesday's recognition ceremony.
Springfield Police

Springfield Police have recognized two citizens that witnessed the abduction of Hailey Owens for their quick attempts to stop the 10-year-old’s captor.

Carlos and Michele Edwards witnessed the incident on West Lombard Street on February 18. According to police, as the crime occurred, the couple immediately took action to attempt to stop the suspect from taking Owens.

“Although unable to catch the suspect or disrupt his plan,” a news release reads, “they were able to provide police with an accurate description of the suspect and his vehicle. Prior to police arrival at the scene, the Edwardses started contacting citizens in the area in order to identify the abducted girl. The actions they took assisted the Springfield Police Department with the arrest of the suspect.”

Police Chief Paul Williams added that the actions of the couple demonstrate positive examples of citizens working with law enforcement to solve a tragic and violent crime.

Owens was found dead hours after the abduction in the basement of Craig Michael Wood. She had been shot in the back of the head. The 46-year-old Wood remains jailed in the case, charged with murder, kidnapping, rape, sodomy and armed criminal action. The Greene County prosecutor is seeking the death penalty in the case.

Springfield Police also Tuesday recognized three promotions, which went into effect on June 29. Sergeant Chad Eutsler was promoted to lieutenant. Officer Mark Schindler was promoted to sergeant. Civilian DeAnn Reynolds was promoted to Fleet and Equipment Supervisor. 

Additionally, Officer Mark Foos was recognized with a Command Commendation, as a member of the Special Response Team (SRT), for assisting with the security of the scene in the February 2013 stand-off on 2506 W. Grand. Due to members of his unit being on mandatory leave, he took the initiative to perform several additional tasks usually divided among all of the members of the team, including planning and supervising the successful execution of numerous search warrants and providing a week of instruction to SRT members. Foos was unable to attend the April 2014 ceremony when other officers were honored for their involvement in the stand-off.