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Murder Mystery: The Roxanne Woods homicide

WEST MICHIGAN (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – February marks 30 years since the murder of a West Michigan woman.

Roxanne Woods was killed in the kitchen of her Niles home. Police say she was likely killed by someone she knew. Officers have a person of interest, but no one has ever been arrested and Roxanne’s family continues to ask why.

Newschannel 3’s Investigative Reporter Walter Smith-Randolph took a closer look at this decades old West Michigan murder mystery.

Three decades have come and gone, but Roxanne’s brother Brad Woods is not giving up hope.

“I was fourteen, getting ready to turn fifteen,” said Woods. “I’ll tell ya, it gets tougher every year.”

Woods remembers the day his sister’s life was cut short.

“Everyone I talk to, everyone I met, even 30 years later, it’s the same thing, she was such a wonderful person, such a joy to be around,” said Woods.

Roxanne was found dead with her throat slit, she had been hit over the head with a frying pan.

“The victim in this was younger,” said Lt. Chuck Christensen, Michigan State Police, “the incident happened in her home and with the specifics of what happened, led us to believe it was somebody close to the situation.”

It’s been 30 years, and while much has changed in Niles, not much has changed in the murder investigation. Police even have the same person of interest 30 years later, and he lives just a few doors down from the crime scene.

“That’s Terry, Roxanne’s husband,” said Woods, “from what I understand he continues to be the prime suspect.”

“You have to look at everything and follow the evidence to wherever that may point,” said Lt. Christensen. “When you do that, you can either eliminate people or not eliminate people within the investigation and in this specific instance, like we talked about, we believe it’s somebody that knew her and was close to her.”

Terry hasn’t spoken to police since an interview right after Roxanne’s murder. So the I-Team drove to Niles to track down Terry. He did not want to talk.

“My thought is, if that was my wife, I would be doing everything I could,” said Brad Woods, “I don’t care if I were down here every day with an attorney, I’d be here, asking the questions.”

And while Terry won’t answer any questions, Brad continues to ask them, hoping someone will come forward.

“I don’t want her to be forgotten about,” said Woods.

“In cold cases, time is on your side,” said Lt. Christensen.

Brad is now hoping that with time, the mystery will be laid to rest.

“Hopefully somebody out there will be able to put the one piece together to help solve this,” said Woods.

Michigan State Police tell Newschannel 3 that they have a detective dedicated solely to the Roxanne Woods cold case.

Anyone with information is asked to call Michigan State Police in Paw Paw.

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