Man who killed wife on cruise ship found dead
A man who admitted to beating his wife to death on a cruise through Alaska has been found dead in his cell one month after being sentenced to 30 years in prison.
Kenneth Manzanares from Utah, US, was found unresponsive in his cell at a facility in Juneau, Alaska on Wednesday morning local time, the Alaska Department of Corrections said.
The department said life-saving measures were attempted but he was later pronounced dead.
Betsy Holley, a department spokesperson, said information “related to an inmate’s medical condition is confidential” but no foul play was suspected.
His death, the seventh to occur in the department’s custody this year, will be reviewed by the Alaska State Troopers and state medical examiner’s office.
Manzanares pleaded guilty last year to second-degree murder of his wife, 39-year-old Kristy Manzanares, on a 2017 Alaska cruise.
The 43-year-old was sentenced last month, with the federal judge overseeing the case describing it as violent and brutal.
A court filing states that Manzanares’ attorneys argued he had brain abnormalities and suffered from bipolar disorder that was undiagnosed at the time, as well as “a problematic combination of prescribed medication and alcohol [which] resulted in an aberrant episode of violence”.
Prosecutors disputed the medical claims, describing Manzanares actions as intentional and “triggered by his wife telling him she wanted him to leave the cruise ship and that she wanted a divorce”, according to court documents.
US District Court Judge Timothy Burgess said Kristy’s life was “viciously ended” by her husband in the attack, which was partly witnessed by two of the couple’s children.
Kristy’s brother and father were also on the cruise and responded to and witnessed the scene afterward, according to prosecution documents.
A statement released by Kristy Manzanares’ family said the sentencing “brings us neither joy nor anger. Rather, simply a sense of resolution”.
“We believe that the court made a fair and just determination. However, the legal system does not and is not intended to fill the emotional void of our loss.
“While this marks the end of another chapter of this unimaginable ordeal, the fact is that Kristy’s three girls are still without both of their parents, and our focus now is to support them as best we can,” the statement said.