By Jonathan Smith, Editor in Chief
Police charged student Brandon Woodruff, 19, with two counts of capital murder Monday in connection with the death of his parents last week, a Hunt County Sheriff’s official confirmed.
Woodruff, freshman agribusiness major from Rockwall, was arrested late Monday morning in Texarkana, Ark., where, according to other news reports, his parents’ funeral was held and where family relatives lived. He is being held in the Hunt County Criminal Justice Center as he awaits trial with bail set at $2 million.
Because of the ongoing criminal investigation and privacy concerns, the university would confirm only that Woodruff was a first-year student, said Dr. Michelle Morris, vice president for University Relations. At the time of his arrest, Woodruff was considered a part-time freshman, and he had participated in university events such as Freshman Follies.
In e-mails sent Monday afternoon, the university asked faculty, staff and students not to release any further information regarding Woodruff to internal or external sources, which includes the media.
Woodruff’s roommate, Eric Gentry, freshman biblical text major from DeSoto, said he could not discuss the case at this time.
According to reports, a family friend found Dennis, 43, and Norma Woodruff, 42, dead in their mobile home near Royse City, northeast of Dallas, on Oct. 18. Chief Deputy Robert White of the Hunt County Sheriff’s Department has told media the bodies were shot and stabbed several times.
White said the doors to the home had been locked and no signs of forced entry were found. He said evidence at the scene made Woodruff a suspect early in the investigation.
In Texas, capital murder, which includes situations in which multiple murders took place, is punishable by death or life in prison.