08 November 2021 :
Steve Woodruff resentenced to death
A man convicted of killing a Riverside police detective more than 20 years ago was sentenced to death for the second time on Friday, Nov. 5, the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office said.
Steve Woodruff, now 58, Black, was initially convicted of murdering Detective Doug Jacobs and sentenced to death in 2003. Then, in 2018 (see HoC 19/07/2018), the state Supreme Court affirmed Woodruff’s guilt but overturned his penalty because justices said a prospective juror was improperly dismissed.
The penalty portion of the trial was conducted again and another jury recommended Woodruff face the death penalty for the 2nd time on Oct. 12. Judge Charles Koosed affirmed the jury’s decision and sentenced him to death on Friday, the District Attorney’s Office said.
In a questionnaire, a jury candidate in the first trial said that while he opposed the death penalty, he could set it aside and follow the law. On a scale of 1 to 10, he circled 1, indicating he was “strongly against” the death penalty. Justices said he should not have been dismissed without further questioning.
Jacobs was shot in the face after he and another officer had a confrontation with Woodruff’s mother and brother while responding to a loud music complaint. Woodruff was also convicted of attempted murder of the other officer, Ben Baker, who has since retired.