Prosecutors to seek death penalty for man charged with Mariah Wo - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Prosecutors to seek death penalty for man charged with Mariah Woods' murder

Earl Kimrey II has been indicted by an Onslow County grand jury in connection with the murder of 3-year-old Mariah Woods. (Source: WITN) Earl Kimrey II has been indicted by an Onslow County grand jury in connection with the murder of 3-year-old Mariah Woods. (Source: WITN)
ONSLOW COUNTY, NC (WECT) -

Onslow County District Attorney Ernie Lee announced Thursday that his office intends to seek the death penalty for the man accused of killing 3-year-old Mariah Woods.

Earl Kimrey II, 32, was indicted by a grand jury Tuesday on the following charges:

  • First-degree murder
  • Felony child abuse inflicting serious bodily injury
  • Obstruction of justice
  • Concealment of death
  • Second-degree burglary
  • Felony larceny
  • Possession of stolen goods 

In a notice filed in Onslow County Superior Court Thursday, the District Attorney's Office said: "the state intends to declare the first-degree murder case as capital and to seek the death penalty due to the existence of at least one aggravating circumstance beyond a reasonable doubt."

Woods was reported missing from her Onslow County home on Dawson Cabin Road on Nov. 27, setting off a massive for the 3-year-old girl.

Investigators said Mariah's mother, Kristy Woods, told investigators she put the toddler to bed on November 26, and Mariah was missing the next morning. 

Kimrey, who was Kristy's live-in boyfriend at the time, told authorities that Mariah had gotten up during the night but was sent back to bed and that he left the door unlocked when he left the home for a short period that night.

Mariah's body was found in Shelter Creek along Shaw Highway in Pender County on Dec. 2.

An autopsy was performed on Dec. 4 at East Carolina University which provided a preliminary cause of death. Additional tests revealed that Mariah died from chloroform toxicity, according to the Onslow County Sheriff's Office.

Kimrey was initially arrested on Dec. 2 and charged with concealing of death, obstruction of justice, second-degree burglary, felony larceny and possession of stolen property.

Kimrey was eventually charged with first-degree murder on Jan. 24. He's currently in the Onslow County Jail under no bond.

His next court date is Feb. 26.

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