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Wayne County prosecutor charges DPD officer in death of attorney Cliff Woodards

Posted at 9:51 AM, Jun 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-24 18:19:45-04

DETROIT, MI (WXYZ) — The Wayne County Prosecutor's office announced that Detroit Police Officer Teaira Iris Funderburg, 29, of Detroit, has been charged in connection with the death of 58-year-old attorney Clifford Woodards.

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Funderburg is facing the following charges: one count of Involuntary Manslaughter, a felony with a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, and one count of Willful Neglect of Duty, a misdemeanor with a penalty of up to one year in jail.

On February 8, officer Funderburg and another on-duty officer were responding to an assistance call from another officer. They headed east on I-96 Freeway with emergency lights and siren activated around 12:57 a.m..

Police say when Funderburg exited the freeway, she was driving at a high speed, disregarded a red signal at the intersection of West Chicago Road and Jeffries Service Drive, and struck Mr. Woodards’ vehicle, killing him. Medics arrived on the scene and transported Mr. Woodards to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

“Proper investigations take time and that is what we strive for in every case. After a thorough analysis of the evidence, the defendant has been charged. It’s true that Mr. Woodards was respected in his profession, but the facts and evidence are what caused us to charge in this case,” said Prosecutor Kym Worthy in a press release.

Arrangements are being made for officer Funderburg's arraignment in 36th District Court.