SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — (2/16/2017) This Saturday (2/18) will mark 3 years since Hailey Owens’ life was taken after being kidnapped and murdered.
Hailey’s Mom and Step-dad still feel the grief as the tears continue to fall especially on days when they have to work up the strength to go to the courtroom, waiting to receive justice for their 10-year-old’s death.
Every day there’s court, Stacey and Jeff sit silently as the defense and prosecution go back and forth trying to build their cases for a trial that’s already been delayed, as the State is considering the death penalty for accused killer Craig Michael Wood.
“I would rather not go to trial for the fact that we would have to relive the situation because during depositions, that was horrible,” says Stacey Barfield, Hailey’s mom. “That was only a glimpse of what I would have to go through at trial. I don’t want to do that again.”
Pinks, purples and pictures remind Stacey of the joy that was Hailey. Her and Jeff donnig the colors almost anywhere they go, including court.
“I’m impatient, but I have to be patient in the courtroom,” says Stacey.
As the patience wears thin some days, the Barfield’s are comforted knowing they’re doing a work, in hopes to protect other children, by getting Hailey’s Law passed this year in Missouri.
Then there’s this unlikely connection; a joining of forces between the parents of the perceived evil and good. Craig Michael Woods’ parents joining the Barfield’s as a show of support to their mission of speeding up the Amber Alert system.
When asked if Jeff and Stacey want to see Craig Michael Wood receive the death penalty Jeff said, “What we want in this case is him to never be able to hurt another child, which means he never has another free day of air…For our family’s sake, I would rather save our family from going to trial that will be a living hell to go through.”
Community leaders have come together to rally behind the Barfield’s and Wood’s to advocate for a plea deal so that Craig Michael Wood spends the rest of his life in jail with no chance at parole.