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Denton Co. Man Gets 25 Years For Killing Wife; Body Not Found

By Melissa Newton, CBS 11 News

DENTON COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – A 56-year-old Sanger man is headed to prison for murdering his estranged wife in December 2004.

Despite the fact that Kathy Stobaugh’s body has never been found, on Friday a Denton County jury sentenced Charles Stobaugh to 25 years behind bars for killing her.

It was the final outcome of a three-week long murder trial.

Six years after the murder Stobaugh will pay for the crime he committed. “He’s going to have a tough time,” said Kathy’s older brother, Mark Munday. “Because he’s used to freedom and his freedom will stop.”

Stobaugh won’t be the only one in prison though, the Munday’s said they’ve been suffering through emotional confinement since the mother of two disappeared. “He done away with the kids’ mother,” said Kathy’s father, James Munday. “He done away with my daughter and their sister.”

Kathy’s younger brother, Chris Munday, said, “His family, who choose to visit him, still get to visit him. We can’t visit Kathy.”

While the Munday’s hoped for a life sentence, Stobaugh’s defense attorney was disappointed with the conviction given the lack of physical evidence. “There was no body, no body parts, no confession, no forensic evidence,” said defense attorney Darrell Comer. “One of the cornerstones of our legal system is the presumption of innocence. We’ve eroded that away to the point it is guilty until proven innocent.”

Prosecuting attorney Susan Piel, said, “I think the jury absolutely gave him the presumption of innocence at the beginning of the trial.”

Although Kathy’s body was never found, Piel said the circumstances all pointed to murder and to Stobaugh.

The couple was in the midst of a bitter divorce when Kathy vanished in December 2004. She was just hours away from filing divorce papers that would guarantee her whatever she wanted in the separation. “If there was one lynch pin that’s it,” Piel said, “he calls her over there, she goes over there, her car is there, and no one ever hears from her again.”

Stobaugh will have to serve at least half of his 25-year prison sentence before becoming eligible for parole. His defense attorney says they plan to appeal.

  • http://fortworthinsight.com/news/denton-co-man-gets-25-years-for-killing-wife-body-not-found/ Denton Co. Man Gets 25 Years For Killing Wife; Body Not Found « Fort Worth News Feeds

    […] Denton Co. Man Gets 25 Years For Killing Wife; Body Not Found A North Texas man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for killing his estranged wife whose body has never been found. Go to News Source […]

  • Kim Dar

    He just thought he comitted a perfect crime. No body, no conviction, right? WRONG. The ones I feel sorry for is their children and both the families. The kid’s mom is gone and now so is their dad. It is just a sad situation all around, but I feel like the jury came in with the only verdict they could.

  • ConcernedTexan

    “the jury came in with the ONLY verdict they could”? REALLY? Because in Texas we throw OUT the law and IGNORE “beyond a reasonable doubt” to convict someone based on GUESSING without evidence? REALLY? God forbid your neighbor disappears, you cooperate with police to try to find them because you were the last to see them. YOU could be convicted of a murder that NO ONE can prove! UNBELIEVABLE!

  • http://www.onestopnewsstand.com/dallas/denton-co-man-gets-25-years-for-killing-wife-body-not-found Denton Co. Man Gets 25 Years For Killing Wife; Body Not Found | One Stop News Stand

    […] CBS Dallas / Fort Worth […]

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