Jury selection under way in 1998 murder of nurse
By By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
Feb. 5, 2001
Jury selection began today in the trial of a Meridian trio accused in the 1998 murder of nurse Mary Ann Woolf, and staging her death as a car accident to collect money on a life insurance policy.
The selection of a 12-member jury began in Lauderdale County Circuit Court with Judge Larry Roberts presiding.
Mary Ann Adams, described as Woolf's best friend, and Adams' brother, 44-year-old John William Barrett, are both charged with murder. A friend, Jefferson Long, is charged as an accessory after the fact in Woolf's June 1998 death.
A grand jury returned murder indictments against Adams and Barrett in July. Long was indicted during a subsequent grand jury session.
Woolf's body was discovered in Suqualena Creek on June 7, 1998, about 4 miles north of Meridian on Hookston Road.
Adams, 50, of 8232 Highway 493, is accused of drowning Woolf at another location, then staging a car accident to conceal the crime.
The principle investigator in the case, Sonny Vincent, said Woolf and Adams were best friends and nurses who worked together at University Medical Center in Jackson. Adams paid premiums on Woolf's $200,000 life insurance policy and was listed as the beneficiary, he said.
The policy carried a double indemnity clause covering accidental death, he said.