California-based Tech CEO arrested for 1992 killing of Laurie Houts. | ICIN

John Kevin Woodward, CEO, and president of California-based company Readytech, is charged with the murder of his former roommate’s girlfriend, Laurie Houts.

Laurie Houts, a 25 years old computer engineer, was found strangled in her car in Mountain View, Santa Clara, in 1992. According to the records, Laurie was found dead in her car near a garbage dump just a mile from her workplace. Her footprints could be found on the car’s windshield, which proves to be a sign of struggle with the suspect. Her pocketbook was also found nearby, undisturbed.


Woodward was a roommate with Houts’ boyfriend and allegedly was jealous of her due to his unrequited feelings for her boyfriend.

Woodward’s fingerprints were found outside Houts’ car, and he was even detained in the same year, that is, 1992, for his connections with the murder, but investigators in 1992 were unable to show that he ever got inside Houts’ car. CBS San Francisco reported that he had been tried two times in the past for this crime. He moved to the Netherlands after his second trial, where he currently resides.

What are the new revelations that led to his arrest?

Thanks to the new and improved DNA technology, the Police started re-examining Houts’ case at the beginning of 2020. They resubmitted the evidence from the crime scene to the lab for renewed analysis. The DNA samples collected at the crime scene came back, matching with DNA samples of Woodward.

Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office issued a new warrant for Woodward’s arrest; he was arrested at John F. Kennedy Airport as soon as he landed in Amsterdam.

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