Texas man drowns girlfriend's 3-year-old nephew to make room for their unborn child at home, gets life in prison

Bobby Woods Jr., 21, will be spending the rest of his life behind bars after he was convicted of capital murder by a jury in the death of Mason Cuttler

                            Texas man drowns girlfriend's 3-year-old nephew to make room for their unborn child at home, gets life in prison
Bobby Woods Jr (Angelina County Sheriff's Office)

LUFKIN, TEXAS: An East Texas man who admitted to drowning the three-year-old nephew of his girlfriend to make room in the house for their unborn child will be spending the rest of his life in prison.

Bobby Woods Jr., 21, of Lufkin, was accused of drowning three-year-old Mason Cuttler in 2015 and confessed to police that he killed the toddler because his girlfriend Billie Jean Cuttler was pregnant and he wanted to make room in his home, which was housing three families at the time, according to Fox News.

Woods told police he pushed Mason into a pond on the family's property in Lufkin, 115 miles northeast of Houston, turned his back, and let him drown.

The toddler's body was found on August 18, 2015, a day after he was reported missing. Investigators also uncovered that Cuttler was not pregnant like Woods had claimed.

His trial began this past week, and on August 15, Woods claimed that his confession was a lie and that he was intimidated by the authorities who were questioning him.

He said he had waived his Miranda Rights because he thought having an attorney was for guilty people, and that he talked to the authorities because he wanted to explain himself and his innocence. 

Cuttler was sentenced to 20 years in prison for her role in her nephew's death (Source: Angelina County Sheriff's Office)

But during the closing arguments the next day, Assistant District Attorney Ken Dies told the jury that Woods was not in custody when he freely and voluntarily gave statements to investigators and that the 21-year-old did not argue with them during the early stages of the investigation.

John Tunnell, Woods' defense attorney, told jurors that Mason's drowning was a tragic accident and that there was no evidence that a crime had been committed.

He argued that a polygraph exam his client had taken was used against him as an interrogation tactic. He said the 21-year-old did not know that the results were inadmissible in court and that they were used to illicit a fake confession out of him. 

After a few hours of deliberations, the jury convicted Woods of capital murder. 

On Monday, August 19, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Cuttler was also charged with capital murder in connection to her nephew's death but struck a plea deal that saw her agree to testify in Woods' trial if called to the witness stand in exchange for a more lenient sentence. She also agreed to waive any further appeals regarding her competency and her criminal case.  

She pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of second-degree felony conspiracy to commit murder and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.  

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