Rocha murder – Woolsencroft trial


April 28th, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The trial of one of three people charged with the murder of a Council Bluffs woman began Tuesday at the Pottawattamie County Courthouse. On Wednesday, the jury heard testimony in the case against 47-year-old Clarence L Woolsoncroft. Woolsoncroft stands accused of first-degree murder, first-degree kidnapping, first-degree robbery and conspiracy in connection with the January 14th death of Tammy Rocha.

Prosecutors say minutes after Rocha and Woolsoncroft had a playful snowball fight, Woolsencroft drove Rocha to a home owned by Lisa A Reeves and her father, Bryan E Reeves. The three are suspected of conspiring to assault Rocha over the theft of a cell phone and some jewelry.

During Wednesday’s proceedings, Dale Mercer, a passenger who rode along with Rocha in Woolsoncroft’s truck the night of the attack, testified that he had never met Woolsoncroft, but Rocha called the man to give them a ride home from the Horseshoe Casino.

Mercer said as Woolsoncroft drove the truck north on 35th Street and made a left turn onto Fifth Avenue, Rocha questioned where they were going. Mercer said Woolsoncroft told her he needed to see some people, but Rocha warned him those individuals would attack her. As the truck approached a house at 3510 Fifth Avenue in Council Bluffs, Rocha tried to push the accelerator pedal, but Woolsoncroft was able to brake and put the truck in park. Mercer said three to four people were waiting near the street for the truck to stop.

Lisa Reeves allegedly began to assault Rocha in Woolsoncroft’s pickup before Woolsoncroft allegedly pulled Rocha out of the truck. Reeves continued to assault the woman, who was eventually found in the street with multiple stab wounds. Rocha later died at the Nebraska Medical Center.