JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A Utah man has agreed to plead guilty to second-degree murder in the death of his wife while on a 2017 family cruise to Alaska, according to a document filed in federal court Monday.
The plea agreement signed by Kenneth Manzanares states he and his wife, Kristy Manzanares, began arguing about his behavior on the evening of the incident and she told him she wanted a divorce. She told him to get off the ship when it stopped in Juneau, its next port of call, so he could return to Utah, the document states.
An adult daughter of the couple and an unidentified minor child were in the cabin of the ship with them but were told to leave by Kenneth Manzanares and went to an adjoining cabin where relatives had been staying, according to the document. Moments later, they heard Kristy Manzanares scream, the document says.
Kenneth Manzanares later admitted to hitting his wife “once with a closed fist, seeing blood and striking Kristy Manzanares another time, and stated he had no memory after that point,” according to the document.
An autopsy determined Kristy Manzanares was killed by blunt force trauma to her head and face, the document says.
A change of plea hearing is scheduled for Friday. Kenneth Manzanares previously pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.