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The William Woodward Jr shooting death: Did wife, Ann Woodward, intentionally kill him or did she think it was an intruder?

William Woodward Jr
William “Billy” Woodward

On the night of October 30, 1955, society couple Billy and Ann Woodward, who slept in separate bedrooms, went to bed, each with a loaded shotgun (there had been several break-ins in the area). Some time later, Ann heard a noise and took her shotgun with her to check it out. According to her, she thought the dark figure in the hallway was an intruder, so she shot him. Only after she shot him did she discover it was her husband, Billy. However, Billy’s mother, Elsie Cryder Woodward, did not believe her, nor did most of his friends. Their marriage was shaky and he planned to divorce her. The Grand Jury did not indict her, either, so she was never charged. Elsie Woodward went along with this so as to not tarnish their name any further.

In 1975, Ann Woodward committed suicide upon hearing that books were being published about the event. Her mother-in-law said, “Well, that’s that. She shot my son, and Truman (Capote) just murdered her, and so now I suppose we don’t have to worry about that anymore.” However, Billy and Ann had 2 sons, so apparently she did not care how her only grandsons felt. Both of them went on to commit suicide as well.

Find-A-Grave: William “Billy” Wodward, Jr
The Woodwards: Tragedy in High Society
Wikipedia: William Woodward, Jr.
The Woodward Affair
Find-A-Grave: Ann Woodward
Heir to a Fortune, and to Tragedy; Suicide Ends the Life of a Wealthy, and Haunted, Man
W. Woodward; Scion of Rich Family Plagued by Tragedy

William and Ann Woodward

Answered Prayers
This Crazy Thing Called Love: The Golden World and Fatal Marriage of Ann and Billy Woodward
The Two Mrs. Grenvilles A Novel (fictionalized)

A Crime To Remember: Who Killed Mr. Woodward?
The Two Mrs. Grenvilles
Biography: Ann Woodward

Ann Woodward2
Ann Woodward

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