FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 30, 2018
For More Information, contact:
Mike Lewis (334) 353-2199
Alabama Attorney General
Joy Patterson (334) 242-7491
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ATTORNEY GENERAL STEVE MARSHALL ANNOUNCES COURT OF
CRIMINAL APPEALS UPHOLDS DEKALB COUNTY MURDER CONVICTION
(MONTGOMERY) Attorney General Steve Marshall announced the Alabama
Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the murder conviction of David Wooten.
Wooten, 46, of Oneonta, was convicted in DeKalb County Circuit Court in April 2017
for the murder of his neighbor Bernie Clark.
Evidence was presented at trial that on or about November 14, 2014, while
Wooten was in Clark’s residence, Wooten inflicted approximately 100 wounds to
Clark’s body. Those injuries included numerous chop and incised wounds to Clark’s
head, throat, arms, and hands and fractures to his skull, facial bones, and jaw. Clark
died from the injuries.
Wooten admitted to killing Clark, but argued at trial that he was entitled to a jury
instruction on the stand-your-ground law because he was invited into Clark’s home, and
thus, had a right to be there. Even accepting the testimony most favorable to Wooten, there
was no evidence presented that he was lawfully in Clark’s residence at the time Clark was
killed. Furthermore, Wooten was the aggressor in the fatal confrontation with Clark.
Dekalb County District Attorney Michael O’Dell’s Office prosecuted the case.
Upon conviction, the trial court sentenced Wooten to life in prison. Wooten appealed
his conviction and sentence.
The Attorney General’s Criminal Appeals Division handled Wooten’s case
during the appeals process, arguing for the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals to
affirm the conviction. The Court did so in a decision issued Friday, May 25th.
Attorney General Marshall commended Assistant Attorney General Madeline
Lewis of the Attorney General’s Criminal Appeals Section for her successful work in
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