Man with Tyrone connections being sought for NC murder

A 1989 Tyrone Area High School graduate is being sought by authorities in North Carolina for the killing of his estranged wife.
The Associated Press reported earlier this week that 35-year-old John Raymond Woodring was accused of pushing his way into a domestic violence shelter and killing his estranged wife. He is being sought by authorities who believe he fled in a stolen car.
Woodring is accused of shooting 48-year-old Bonnie Woodring to death Monday night, Sylva, NC police Chief Jeff Jamison said. Investigators believe he might have headed to Pennsylvania or Tennessee, and issued a nationwide alert for him.
Tyrone Police Chief Joseph Beachem told The Daily Herald he had been provided information by Sylva Police regarding the case.
The Associated Press report said Woodring was already wanted on domestic violence charges after being accused of violating a protective order and trying to strangle his wife at her home.
After that attack last week, Bonnie Woodring and her 13-year-old son from a previous marriage moved to the shelter, which has a variety of security features including a locked door that can be opened only by using a numerical keypad.
Investigators said Woodring, carrying a shotgun, pushed past a staff worker who was leaving the shelter for the night, then gunned down his wife in the kitchen.
She and her son were the shelter's only occupants, and the boy was not in the kitchen at the time.
The shelter is run by REACH of Jackson County, a nonprofit organization that works with domestic violence victims, and can house up to four families at a time. It was closed temporarily after the shooting.
Even after “the thousands and thousands of women and children we've kept safe, this one has been just devastating,” REACH of Jackson County executive director Jean Bockstahler said.
Woodring was believed to have fled in a stolen blue Honda Civic, and was considered armed and dangerous.
Chief Jamison said investigators have traced all of Woodring's connections in western North Carolina, including two ex-wives, and in two other states. Officer Tammy Hooper said Wednesday those are Pennsylvania, where Woodring is from, and Tennessee.
Investigators believe he might have headed to either of those states, and issued a nationwide alert for Woodring and the stolen car, said Hooper. Authorities were continuing their search as of this morning.
Yesterday, the AP reported Woodring was a teaching assistant at Western Carolina University, where he also was studying for a master's degree in counseling, officials said.
Western Carolina does not usually check the criminal backgrounds of its graduate student teachers, said Leila Tvedt, associate vice chancellor for public relations. Reports about criminal history, if received by the school, would trigger such a search, she said.
“I can assure you that if it had come to their attention they would have examined it closely,” she said.
All students are asked if they have committed a crime when applying to the school.
“That doesn't automatically disqualify you as a student,” Tvedt said. “However, it certainly raises a red flag.”
Woodring's criminal record in Jackson County includes misdemeanors such as forgery, theft and driving while impaired. He was charged with domestic violence while in a previous marriage, and a federal court ordered him to stay away from another woman after a conviction for trespassing.
He became a student at Western Carolina in 2001, where he earned a bachelor's degree in sociology.
On his Web site, Woodring begged for forgiveness in one of his last messages to his wife. He promised he would change and the violence would end.
That message was similar to a newspaper advertisement he paid for almost 10 years ago that sought to win back a previous wife after he was charged with assaulting her.
The Asheville (NC) Citizen-Times newspaper listed the following description of Woodring on its web site. He is described as white, 5 feet, 10 inches tall and weighs 190 pounds with straight, short, brown hair. He has a U.S. Marine Corps tattoo on his arm. The vehicle he is alleged to have stolen was described as a blue 2006 Honda Civic. bearing North Carolina plate JRY2108. Police are offering an unspecified cash reward for information leading to Woodring’s capture.
Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times,