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Murder charge dismissed against U.S. Open tennis ump

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 4:04 PM EST, Fri November 30, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Charges are dismissed against a woman suspected of murdering her husband
  • Suspect Lois Goodman is a tennis umpire who had worked the U.S. Open
  • The prosecutor's office says the case was dropped because of "additional information"
  • Goodman's attorney said earlier in November that his client's husband died in an accident

Los Angeles (CNN) -- New evidence has persuaded Los Angeles County prosecutors to drop murder charges against a U.S. Open tennis umpire.

Lois Goodman, 70, had been accused of bludgeoning her 80-year-old husband, Alan, with a coffee mug, and then fatally stabbing him with the broken mug's shards at their California home in April.

"We received additional information regarding the case," Sandi Gibbons of the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said Friday. "Based upon this information, we announced that we are unable to proceed with the case at this time. The court granted our request to dismiss the case without prejudice."

The district attorney and police are still investigating the case, and "will not make any further statements that might compromise that investigation," Gibbons added.

Police arrested Lois Goodman in New York in August as she was preparing for the U.S. Open tournament. Her preliminary court hearing had been scheduled for December 7 by Van Nuys Superior Court Judge Jessica Silvers.

On November 8, Mrs. Goodman's lawyer, Robert Sheahen, maintained his client's husband died "an accidental death," and volunteered to let prosecutors check out Goodman's property.

"It is not something we would be doing if we had anything to hide," he said at the time. "We don't feel we have anything to hide, and we want them to be able to come out and actually look at the scene so that they can see the scene consistent with the way we view it."

In August, the assistant chief Los Angeles County coroner said Alan Goodman's death was no accident. "Mr. Goodman had injuries that were not, as reported, from a possible fall, and we did an autopsy, and it was determined that he died at the hand of another," Ed Winter said.

The prosecutor had claimed on November 8 that the state had a "strong circumstantial case" against Lois Goodman.

CNN's Stella Chan contributed to this report.

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