Husband who 'beat wife on cruise ship to death blames testosterone supplement'
Kenneth Manzanares is seeking a more lenient sentence after pleading guilty to murdering his wife Kristy aboard the Emerald Princess
A man who admitted to beating his wife to death on a cruise ship is seeking a more lenient sentence and blaming a ‘history of testosterone supplementation’, among other impairments. Kenneth Manzanares, 43, pleaded guilty last year to murdering his wife Kristy Manzanares, but a new court filing states he underwent testing that revealed various disorders.
Kenneth had ‘neuropsychological testing and neuropsychiatric mental status examinations’ revealing neurocognitive and mood disorders and other functional impairments that contributed to him beating his wife in 2017, his lawyer Jamie McGrady wrote in the filing.
The sentencing memo filed on Thursday notes ‘functional impairments, due to a long history of testosterone use, including increased dosage, which triggered a “manic switch,” an irritable and elevated mood that directly impacted his mental cognitive functioning’.
‘What happened that night on the ship is what can only be described as a perfect storm,’ McGrady wrote. ‘Kenny’s brain injury, combined with his undiagnosed Bipolar Disorder and a problematic combination of prescribed medication and alcohol resulted in an aberrant episode of violence.’
Kenneth also played contact sports in college that caused him to suffer several concussions, the defense attorney said.
Kristy and Kenneth argued after she asked him for a divorce while the family was aboard the Emerald Princess cruise in Alaska in July 2017. The wife told her husband to leave the ship and go back to Utah, according to the US Attorney for the District of Alaska. Kenneth then told their children to leave the room and both went to a relative’s cabin. Kristy could be heard screaming as her husband straddled and punched her in the head.
Kristy’s father and brothers arrived to find Kenneth grabbing her body and dragging her towards the balcony. One of the men grabbed her ankles and brought her back into the cabin, but medical personnel were not able to revive her. Kenneth was arrested the next day.
Kenneth pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in February 2020. Prosecutors have argued that he admitted to ‘the most serious crime a person can commit against another’ and are seeking a life sentence.
McGrady said his client is willing and available to be tested by a government mental health expert and that prosecutors have not initiated the process.
Kenneth’s sentencing is scheduled for June.