Photo: AP Images
The arrest of an ageing tennis referee in her husband’s death was a shocker last summer. On Friday the case took another surprise twist when prosecutors dropped the murder case against Lois Goodman.The case was dismissed due to insufficient evidence and without prejudice.
The 70-year-old Goodman had been accused of bludgeoning her 80-year-old husband to death with a coffee cup. She said she was innocent and her lawyers suggested Alan Goodman died in an accidental fall.
The couple had been married 50 years and had three grown daughters. They had lived in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles their entire lives.
Alan Goodman died in April. Authorities initially believed he fell down stairs at home while his wife was away but later decided it was homicide after a mortuary reported suspicious injuries on his head. They then alleged he had been clobbered on the head with a coffee mug and began to treat Goodman as a suspect.
But defence lawyers said there was little forensic evidence in the case because of the delay in the investigation. They recently disclosed Lois Goodman had passed polygraph tests supporting her claim of innocence.
She was arrested by Los Angeles police in New York in August as she arrived to be a line judge in the U.S. Open. She made her first court appearance wearing her tennis uniform.
Goodman, who has refereed matches between some of tennis’s greatest players, pleaded not guilty.
After a brief stay in jail, she had been released on electronic monitoring and subsequently came to court for pretrial hearings with friends and family there to support her.
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