April 15 More than Tax Day for Man Facing Attempted Murder Charge of Hitting Pedestrian with Vehicle

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By Keana Sauray

MODESTO, CA – April 15 means more than tax day to Raymond Woodral—that’s the day he will be arraigned and a trial date set for attempted murder here in Stanislaus County Superior Court.

Friday, a judge determined at a preliminary hearing there was sufficient evidence to hold Woodral for attempted murder with premeditation and enhancements.

Testimony from the victim was presented to Judge Dawna Reeves supporting a statement claiming that the victim was hit by a vehicle driven by Woodral.

The prosecution stated the victim “sustained a broken leg, a fractured finger, and lacerations to his head.” He was treated at a local unknown hospital.

The prosecution asked the court to consider Woodral liable for assaulting the victim with his vehicle as the enhancement of “using the vehicle as a deadly weapon,” and that it was premeditated.

“The defendant did take at least one effective step towards killing [the victim). The only thing that saved [the victim] from dying that night was quite frankly a miracle,” the prosecution said.

According to an officer’s testimony, Woodral’s motive for his attempt to kill the victim was that an [unknown woman] was going to take off with the victim instead of him, according to the woman’s statement.

“Mr. Woodral’s actions clearly indicated that Mr. Woodral appeared to be angry and acting out in anger” the prosecution argued, noting surveillance cameras showed Woodral leaving in the vehicle, turning several corners, and then waiting for the victim and the woman to cross the street—where Woodral appeared to accelerate and hit the victim at a high rate of speed.

The defense stated that, although evidence is equally consistent with “extreme negligence” by the accused, since the victim didn’t say Woodral expressed ill will, there is an absence of sufficient evidence to prove that Woodral had motive to kill.

However, Judge Reeves said, considering the consistency of the video surveillance with testimony from the witnesses, Woodral is being held on Count 1 of attempted murder with deliberate intent run the victim over, and Count 2 for the use of a deadly weapon to cause bodily injuries to the victims.

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About The Author

Keana is a fourth year undergraduate student at California State University, Long Beach. She is majoring in Criminal justice with a minor in Forensics, and plans to graduate Spring 2022. She is anticipating either continuing her education at graduate school or pursuing her career as a Homicide Detective.

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