Suspect in 2012 Butler Co. murder captured in Oklahoma - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Suspect in Butler Co. murder captured in OK after high speed chase

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Barbara Wood's mug shot from Oklahoma (Source: Stephens County Sheriff's Dept.) Barbara Wood's mug shot from Oklahoma (Source: Stephens County Sheriff's Dept.)
Barbara Wood's original mug shot from 2012. (Source: Butler County Jail) Barbara Wood's original mug shot from 2012. (Source: Butler County Jail)
BUTLER CO., AL (WSFA) -

The suspect in a Butler County murder case, who disappeared as her trial was about to start, has been captured in Oklahoma.

Barbara Wood, 44, was arrested Wednesday in Duncan, Oklahoma- a town not far from the border between Texas and Oklahoma, located 100 miles south of Oklahoma City.

Detective John Byers with the Duncan Police Department says Wood surfaced at a local convenience store Tuesday and the clerk called police because she was making statements about getting in a fight.

Officers spoke to her at the scene and she gave a fake name, Byers said. No warrants came back on the name and she did not have ID on her so she was released.

At 12:15 AM Wednesday, Byers says an officer drove by the convenience store again and spotted Wood drive behind it and speed off, blowing through a stop sign.

When the officer tried to pull her over, she didn't stop and led police on a chase that covered 35 miles, mostly on a state highway, and reached speeds of more than 100 mph. 

According to Det. Byers, Wood eventually ran off the road and her car stalled out but when officers got out of their cars to arrest her, she restarted her car and put it in gear, moving forward where an officer was standing and nearly hitting him. One of the other officers rammed her car with his squad car to disable it and she was taken into custody.

Police found papers in the car indicating she was in Tennessee at one point. When they ran her license plate, it came back to different vehicle of the same make, a 2010 Hyundai Accent. But Byers said a search of her car also turned up her Alabama license plate and when officers ran it through the National Crime Information Center, it alerted them about her murder charges in Butler County. 

Byers said he does not know of any connections Wood has in Oklahoma. She was arrested for DUI refusal, Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance, Giving False Information to Police, Attempting to Elude and No Insurance. He believes she was under the influence of narcotics at the time of the incident. 

On Wednesday afternoon, she was being held at the Stephens County Jail. 

Her arrest was welcome news to Della Owens. Wood is accused of killing Owens' son, 40-year-old Steven Faulk, in Butler County in 2012.

"It's the first time I've really been happy and smiled in a while. Tomorrow is my birthday and this is the best birthday present I could ask for," Owens said. "I was afraid that she'd injure or hurt somebody else and I don't want another mother to have to go through what I went through. How could a person who is out on bond for murder- how could local authorities not keep tabs on them?"

Faulk and his fiancee went to confront Wood over a stolen purse the night he was shot and killed. Wood allegedly shot Faulk with a shotgun while he attempted to appear as a peacemaker in the conflict.

Wood was out on bond and was set to stand trial a month ago. June 16 was the day jury selection was to start. When she vanished, a nationwide search got underway, ending more than 800 miles away in Oklahoma.

Owens is thanking the police in Duncan. As authorities work to piece together where Wood has been the past few weeks, Della Owens is waiting to see her in the courtroom.

"I'm just glad that there are good cops out there who do their job and do it well. I'm so glad that she's off the streets," she told WSFA. "I want justice for Steven. It was senseless. There was no call for it to even happen. He never even got a word out before she shot him."

Faulk's family members say they were told by authorities that Wood would be brought back to Butler County as soon as possible to face her murder charge.

Detective Byers says Barbara Wood left Alabama with a 76-year-old Coffee County man named Maxwell Barnes. 

Barnes was not with Wood when she was caught in Oklahoma and Duncan police say he is now considered missing. 

Their relationship is not clear but detectives say they are concerned about Barnes' safety. 

Copyright 2014 WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

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