Court documents: Man watched movies, ate after killing Springfield grad

Prosecutors said in court documents that a man accused of killing a Springfield High School graduate and dumping her body into a Kettering dumpster told a detective he watched movies and ate after her slaying.

Terrel Ross, 37, is charged in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court with murder, felonious assault, tampering with evidence and gross abuse of a corpse. He has pleaded not guilty and is being held on $1 million bond in the Montgomery County Jail.

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Ross is accused of stabbing his 24-year-old girlfriend Sierra Woodfork to death and then putting her body in a closet, a refrigerator and finally the dumpster. Authorities responded in January 2020 to her Aberdeen Avenue apartment building when her body was discovered.

Ross has been jailed since his arrest on Jan. 20 and his case has been slowed multiple times because of the coronavirus.

His attorneys filed a motion in June to suppress evidence in the case.

“Defendant contends that he was in custody when he was questioned and should have been issued his Miranda warnings,” the motion stated. “Defendant also contends that he did not voluntarily, knowingly and intelligently waive his rights when answering questions. Defendant also contends that his statements were the product of coercion, overreaching or promises.”

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Prosecutors responded earlier this month, asking the court to deny the motion to suppress. In the court document, prosecutors outline how police interrogated Ross after he was picked up at a Dayton homeless shelter.

“(Detectives) advised defendant of his Miranda Rights … Defendant acknowledged those rights and signed a written pre-interview form …” the document stated “The subsequent interview lasted approximately two and a half hours. During the interview, defendant was provided with a glass of water and did not ask for any breaks, nor did he ask for any other comfort.”

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Prosecutors said in the filing that Ross was articulate and cooperative throughout the interview. They said the tone of the interview was casual.

It was after the interview when Ross was placed in a room and being booked into the Kettering Jail that prosecutors noted an exchange between him and the detective. The document stated that a detective made a comment to one of the jailors “expressing disbelief about defendant’s activities after the homicide.”

“During that conversation, defendant remained in the separate room next to where the conversation was occurring,” the court filing stated “(The detective) believed the door was shut at the time of his comments. After his statements to the jailor, (the detective) noticed defendant appeared to have been trying to listen. Defendant then summoned (the detective) to him through a window in the door. (The detective) went to check on defendant at which point defendant said to him, unprompted, ‘I heard what you said. I didn’t just watch movies. I ate, too.”

A request for comment sent to defense attorney Lucas Wilder wasn’t returned Friday.

A next court date in the case had not been listed on the docket. A ruling on the motion to suppress is expected at a later date.

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