Convicted killer sentenced to death in 2014 Glendale murder case

Feb 29, 2024, 9:05 AM

Gustin Ray Woodman, seen in an undated Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentr...

Gustin Ray Woodman, seen in an undated booking photo, was sentenced to death in a 2014 murder case. (Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry Photo)

(Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry Photo)

PHOENIX – A defendant convicted of fatally shooting a 72-year-old man in Glendale 10 years ago was sentenced to death this week, authorities announced Thursday.

A jury imposed the death penalty on 34-year-old Gustin Ray Woodman Jr. for the June 24, 2014, murder of Mark Woodruff, according to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.

Prosecutors say Woodruff was on his way home from an overnight shift as a church janitor when Woodman saw him at gas station and followed him with the intent of robbing him.

Woodruff was found dead, with a gunshot wound to his head, in a vehicle outside his home near 43rd and Maryland Avenues. Detectives located a 9MM shell casing near the victim.

During a traffic stop on Woodman two days later, officers found a 9MM handgun with a shell casing stuck in the chamber. The Glendale Police Department Forensic Unit later determined that the casing in the gun was associated with the one found at the murder scene.

Woodman reportedly was arrested for allegedly robbing a man the parking lot of a Berks County, Pennsylvania, Walmart in September 2014 before being extradited to Arizona.

What were the charges against Gustin Woodman?

In October 2023, a jury found Woodman guilty on the following felony counts: first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit armed robbery with a deadly weapon, armed robbery with a deadly weapon and possession of a weapon by a prohibited person.

He received the death penalty for the murder charge and a sentence of 15.75 years in prison for the other offenses.

“I commend our prosecutors and the Glendale Police Department Homicide Unit for their work over the last ten years finding justice for this victim,” County Attorney Rachel Mitchell said in a press release Thursday. “I hope this sentence can bring some semblance of closure to the Woodruff family and the community of faith he loved so much.”

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Convicted killer sentenced to death in 2014 Glendale murder case