Court accepts former state senator’s appeal of convictions

  • This photo provided by the Concord Police Department shows New Hampshire state Sen. Jeff Woodburn. Woodburn, the Senate's minority leader, faces charges including simple assault, domestic violence and criminal mischief stemming from the encounters that took place both last year and this year. Woodburn is accused of hitting and biting a woman and kicking in the door of her house. (Concord Police Department via AP)

Published: 9/3/2021 4:45:45 PM

The New Hampshire Supreme Court has accepted the appeal of a former state senator who seeks to overturn his convictions on misdemeanor charges of domestic violence, criminal mischief and simple assault.

Jeff Woodburn, 56, of Whitefield, was convicted of four charges in Coos County in May and sentenced in July to 60 days in jail. He had pleaded not guilty. He remains out on bail pending his appeal.

The Caledonian-Record reports the court accepted Woodburn’s appeal on Aug. 25.

Woodburn was accused of slapping a woman and punching her in the stomach, as well as biting her once on the hand, and on another occasion, on the forearm. His lawyer had argued that the woman conspired with a mutual friend to develop a list of incidents Woodburn allegedly committed in a plot to scare him and prevent him from leaving her. A prosecutor said that wasn’t true.

In his notice of appeal, Woodburn asks whether the trial judge was wrong or violated his constitutional rights when it failed to give the jury a self-defense instruction and didn’t allow evidence of prior aggression on the part of the alleged victim, among other questions.

Woodburn, a Democrat, served three terms in the Senate. He lost reelection in 2018 to Republican David Starr, of Franconia.

Associated Press

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