Who is Joseph Woodruff? Ashley and Wynonna Judd want judge to recuse himself from mom Naomi's death case

The Judd family said that the documents are 'private, incredibly sensitive, and do nothing more than re-open the fresh wounds of Naomi Judd's death'

Who is Joseph Woodruff? Ashley and Wynonna Judd want judge to recuse himself from mom Naomi's death case
Ashley (L) and Wynonna Judd (R) have requested the withdrawal of the judge overseeing their lawsuit in order to prevent the release of details regarding the loss of their mother, Naomi Judd (C) (Evan Agostini/Getty Images)
ADVERTISEMENT

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE: Ashley and Wynonna Judd are requesting the withdrawal of the judge, Joseph A Woodruff, overseeing their lawsuit in order to prevent the release of details regarding the loss of their mother, Naomi Judd. Naomi, 76, committed suicide by shooting herself in the head. When the incident occurred, Ashley was at her mother's house.

ADVERTISEMENT

A lawsuit was filed a few weeks after the singer's passing on April 30, 2022, by her daughters and her husband Larry Strickland. The Williamson County, Tennessee, sheriff, Dusty Rhoades, as well as the reporters who had asked for the data were sued by the family. Photo, video, and audio files are all part of the file that the family wants to be sealed. The Judd family said that the documents are "private, incredibly sensitive, and do nothing more than re-open the fresh wounds of Naomi Judd's death." Contrarily, the defendants have claimed that since the records are public, they need to be made available.

ADVERTISEMENT

READ MORE

Wynonna Judd reveals how touring has helped her find 'meaning' in tragic death of mom Naomi Judd

Alan Jackson moved to tears as he tributes Loretta Lynn with heartrending song he wrote for mom's funeral

ADVERTISEMENT

The file includes text exchanges between Ashley and the family psychologist Ted, body camera footage, pictures of the "Post It" note Naomi left at the scene of the killing, and handwritten notes from police, according to RadarOnline.com. The police file also includes images of the weapons kept inside the residence and the 911 calls made on the day of the incident.

ADVERTISEMENT



 

Ashley and Wynonna now claim that Woodruff showed "bias and unfairness" toward them during the court hearings, according to court records acquired by RadarOnline.com. The sisters claimed that Woodruff had, "acted in a manner which would lead a reasonable person to believe the Court has unfairly prejudged this matter prior to an opportunity to be heard on the merits."

ADVERTISEMENT

The sisters added, "The Court has expressed opinions and made inappropriate conclusions which would lead a reasonable and objective person to believe the Court's opinion on the merits of this case is unlikely to change."


ADVERTISEMENT


 

"In light of this Court's prior rulings making merit determinations inappropriately, threat of contempt, disregard for cited case law, and disregard for the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure, the Court's impartiality might reasonably be questioned by the average person," the sisters concluded. Therefore, they call for Woodruff's resignation and the selection of a new one.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Plaintiffs respectfully request Judge Woodruff recuse himself from this case and that this case be reassigned to a new judge in order that the court’s impartiality not be reasonably questioned, and the important privacy interests of this family be considered without prejudging the merits of the case, threats of record disclosure, and contempt sanctions," the motion reads. Woodruff's decision is still pending.

ADVERTISEMENT



 

ADVERTISEMENT

Share this article: Who is Joseph Woodruff? Ashley and Wynonna Judd want judge to recuse himself from mom Naomi's death case