Photo via Pixabay
Photo via Pixabay

A state appeals court panel Wednesday upheld the first-degree murder conviction and 50-year sentence of a killer who shot his wife in the head in their Long Beach home, then dragged her body to the bathroom and unsuccessfully tried to cut up the corpse with nearly 100 slashes.

After returning from a visit to a brothel in Nevada, he called 911 on March 3, 2013, to report that he had killed his wife and sent a text message to the victim’s cousin advising that his wife was dead and that he “mutilated her corpse a lot,” according to the appellate court panel’s ruling.

The three-justice panel from California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal found that  the evidence supporting a finding that Kevin Adonis Forrest “had the requisite mental state for first-degree murder was overwhelming, whereas the evidence of appellant’s intoxication at the time of the killing — consisting of his own testimony that he was drinking that night and the presence of empty containers of alcohol around the house — was extremely weak.”

In a 21-page ruling, the appellate court justices noted that Forrest shot his wife of 19 years, Kathleen, in the head on Feb. 27, 2013, as she watched television, then rolled her body onto a towel, dragged her to the bathroom, placed her in the bathtub and inflicted 94 sharp-force injuries — several of which would have been fatal if she had not died from the gunshot wound.

He subsequently acknowledged to police that he came up behind his wife and shot her, then took photos of her in the bathtub. Police also found a letter in Forrest’s handwriting in which he described in graphic detail what he had done to his wife’s body, according to the opinion.

Forrest — who had served on active duty in the U.S. Coast Guard for 17 1/2 years and in the Coast Guard reserves for 4 1/2 years — testified that his wife had been verbally abusive to him.

He was convicted in September 2014 of first-degree murder and sentenced in December 2014 to 50 years to life in state prison.

–City News Service 

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