Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Child drop off leads to "estranged" wife's murder (Hendry County, Florida)

This case illustrates why it's ridiculous for batterers and abusers to have child custody/visitation rights. Even if these bozos aren't a direct threat to the safety of the kids (and only a small percentage "limit" their abuse to the mother), it still puts the mother at high risk when she's dropping the kids off or picking them up. Witness the case of Melissa Shook, who "disappeared" after dropping of her child at the home of her "estranged" husband, JOSEPH SHOOK. She was later found dead in a field located four blocks away. Her "estranged" husband is now on trial for her murder.


Jury seated in Shook murder trial
Posted: Nov 30, 2009 3:11 PM CST
Updated: Nov 30, 2009 4:56 PM CST

HENDRY COUNTY: Jury selection began and ended Monday in the murder trial of Joseph Shook, who is accused of killing his estranged wife Melissa Shook in July 2007.

The close-knit community of Hendry County presented challenges for both sides as they tried to seat a jury in the case.

Some of the jurors were related, many knew each other and one even went to high school with Joseph Shook.

They were asked questions about divorce, domestic violence, marital problems and custody battles, all topics that will likely come up in the trial.

In the end, five women and three men were chosen to sit on the jury.

Opening statements are expected in the morning.

Melissa's father reported to Lee County deputies that she dropped off her child at her estranged husband's house at 10:30 a.m. on July 24 and had not been seen since.

On July 29, Melissa's body was found buried in a field near the Lee/Hendry county line four blocks from Joseph Shook's house.

The final mediation for their divorce was scheduled for July 26, 2007.

Deputies found duct tape, rope and a shovel in Joseph's garage. The duct tape forensically matched the duct tape found on Melissa's mouth, according to court documents.

The shovel and rope were purchased at a local hardware store on July 18.

Joseph Shook is being tried in Hendry County because he was given the option of having the trial in Lee or Hendry counties. He chose Hendry.