Burkburnett child abuser loses rights as a parent

A  former Burkburnett mother sentenced to 45 years last month in a gruesome child abuse case, today lost her parental rights to her children and stepchildren in what the judge called a tragic case for all the children.   

Sara Woody took the witness stand in the county court at law to ask that those rights not be taken away while her case is under appeal. She and her attorney said it's best that the kids stay together,  but with six children, three sets of parents and four attorneys involved, it did not seem a likely outcome.

Court at Law Judge Greg King ruled to terminate Woody's rights because of the 45 year sentence and because there is no way to predict how or when the appeals court will rule. He also noted that two of the children's parents  had already agreed to surrender their rights. 

In her testimony, Woody said there were many false accusations in her trial, and is appealing the verdict because of jury misconduct. Two of Woody's children will be in custody of their father in South Dakota, who was urged to maintain their relationship with their other siblings  and half siblings.

Four of Woody's children or stepchildren remain with foster parents, with final custody to be determined. The prosecutor in her trial said both the primary and secondary victims in this abuse case suffer from post traumatic stress and will have long term problems because of it.

Woody will be eligible for parole in 22 and a half years.


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