Jury finds Las Cruces neurologist guilty on one of three criminal sexual contact charges

Las Cruces neurologist, Robert Woody, on trial. (Credit: KFOX14/CBS4)

After more than seven hours of deliberation, a jury found the Las Cruces neurologist accused of fondling patients guilty on one of the three misdemeanor criminal sexual contact charges.

Dr. Robert Woody, 65, stood trial for groping three patients on separate occasions.

The jury acquitted Woody on one count of criminal sexual contact, and the jury was unable to reach a verdict on a third count of criminal sexual contact. A mistrial was declared due to manifest necessity on that sole count.

Woody was also charged with four counts of first-degree kidnapping but those charges were dismissed by District Judge Douglas R. Driggers on Thursday.

The state presented the final accuser Friday morning.

During the course of the trial, five people came forward accusing Woody of inappropriate contact.

The victims testified that Woody asked them about their sexual activity and orientation. Woody also stood accused of kissing the patients on the neck, caressing their chests and fondling their groin areas.

The state presented a rebuttal witness to the character testimony the jury heard Thursday regarding Woody.

The final witness told jurors the neurologist touched his butt inappropriately and “touched or brushed” his genitalia.

The witness, who became emotional on the stand, said he visited Woody for only migraines and headaches.

“This defendant took advantage of patients who trusted him to provide care for their medical issues,” District Attorney Mark D’Antonio said. “I genuinely hope that today’s outcome gives the victims in this case some closure. I applaud the courage of the victims who came forward and testified, helping to assure that Dr. Woody will be held accountable for his inappropriate and criminal behavior.”

One of the victims says he's happy with the guilty verdict on his case.

"It came out the way I wanted. I was kind of nervous after seven and a half hours but God was with me on this case and I couldn't be her without my mom by my side and without all my great friends who drove all the way out here to pick me up and take me back home to the life I live," he said.

The state will ask for the maximum sentence of 364 days in jail and requested that Woody be held without bond pending his sentence. The judge denied the state's request and released Woody on a $10,000 bond pending trial.

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