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Husband who beat wife to death on cruise ship blames testosterone supplements
May 11, 2021
A man who admitted beating his wife to death during an argument on a cruise ship claims his mental health issues at the time were exacerbated by a "history of testosterone supplementation".
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.
Manzanares' defence attorney Jamie McGrady says her client has undergone "neuropsychological testing and neuropsychiatric mental status examinations" that revealed a neurocognitive disorder, mood disorder, and other functional impairments that contributed to his violent outburst, and has asked for a more lenient sentence for him.
"What happened that night on the ship is what can only be described as a perfect storm— 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," McGrady wrote.
She added that Manzanares played contact sports through college and had multiple concussions.
In the sentencing memo, McGrady said Manzanares’ mental state left him barely capable of remembering the brutal beating of his wife — and claimed her client is extremely remorseful.
The motion stated: "Manzanares appreciates the gravity of what he has done.
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"He understands the profound loss that his children, their family, and the community feel as a result of Kristy’s death. He also lost the love of his life, and he now must bear that responsibility for the rest of his life.
"Throughout his incarceration, Kenny has struggled to understand this tragedy.
"Although he has come to understand more about himself, his impairments and deficits, he knows it is no excuse and this explanation will likely give no comfort to those who loved his wife."
On the night of his wife's death, Manzanares grew furious with Kristy, 39, during a trip to Alaska with their three children and relatives.
In an explosive row, Kristy demanded she wanted a divorce before Kenneth viciously beat her – according to a police report.
Two of their children watched as Kenneth punched his wife and then as he tried to throw her over a balcony.
Shockingly, staff who came across the bloody scene in the couple’s cabin thought it might have been part of the night’s murder-mystery-themed dinner.
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In another bizarre case of confession, guests onboard the Emerald Princess thought the captain's urgent announcement for the crew to rush to the room was part of the entertainment.
Passenger Megan Morr said: "The captain announced, 'Everyone, we need all medical, security, all personnel to deck nine and deck 14'.
"He was very worked up. People were running through the hall with blood all over them."
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When Kenneth and Kristy first started rowing, the dad told his children to leave the couple’s cabin, but they later heard "blood-curdling" screams and tried to force their way back inside.
Shortly afterwards, security and medics were called to the room – but Kristy could not be saved.
An autopsy later found she had been killed by blunt-force trauma to her head and face.
When asked what happened, Manzanares told cops he snapped because his wife "would not stop laughing at me".
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Manzanares later admitted in June, Alaska, that he hit the mum-of-three "once with a closed fist, seeing blood and striking another time".
He later claimed to have no memory of the attack and told detectives: "My life is over."
McGrady also noted that prosecutors have not had Manzanares tested by a government mental health expert despite his willingness and availability to do so.
Sentencing in the case is scheduled for next month.
If you have been affected by issues of domestic violence or coercive control you can call Refuge's 24-Hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline for free. The number is 0808 2000 247