The man who police said drove overnight from South Carolina to Antioch to kill his wife pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Thursday morning.
Facing trial on first-degree murder charges, John Kratochvil, 44, agreed to serve 35 years on the second-degree charge for the March 2, 2009, murder of his 32-year-old wife, Manisha Kratochvil.
Last year, Metro police said John Kratochvil told them he drove to South Carolina but returned during the early hours of March 2, 2009, killed his wife, ransacked part of the house to simulate a burglary, and then drove back to South Carolina.
In Judge J. Randall Wyatt’s courtroom on Thursday, Kratochvil pleaded to an “out-of-range” sentence, meaning he will serve more time than if he’d been convicted of second-degree murder after a trial, according to Susan Niland, spokeswoman for the district attorney's office.
Police said the Kratochvils’ two children, 3 and 6 at the time, were in the house with their grandmother at the time of their mother’s murder.