Man accused of killing Mariah Woods in court this afternoon

Man accused of killing Mariah Woods in court this afternoon

ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) – A man who made national headlines after being charged with murdering an Onslow County toddler is set to appear in court this afternoon after several delayed trials.

Earl Kimrey is charged with the first-degree murder of 3-year-old Mariah Woods in 2017. Kimrey was Woods’ mother’s live-in boyfriend at the time of her disappearance which sparked a massive search effort.

Mariah Woods

Mariah Woods

District Attorney Ernie Lee has not said whether Kimrey will be in the courtroom for his actual trial or for a plea.

Prosecutors said in 2018 they would seek the death penalty against Kimrey if he is convicted.

Today’s appearance is at 2:00 p.m. and comes after several delayed trial dates due to the pandemic and other issues like Kimrey’s lawyer preparing for another murder trial.

Woods’ body was found in a creek in Pender County several days after she was reported missing. The case left scars in the community that continue to go unhealed as the proceedings drag out.

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