Husband who beat wife to death on Alaska cruise is found dead in prison

Husband who beat wife to death on Alaska cruise is found dead in prison

A HUSBAND who was imprisoned for beating his wife to death in front of their children was found dead in his prison cell this week.

The Utah family was aboard an Alaskan cruise in 2017 when the husband beat the wife to death. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Kenneth Manzanares, 43, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder last year after beating his 39-year-old wife Kristy Manzanares to death on July 25, 2017.

He was sentenced to 30 years in prison plus five years on probation.

On July 14, Kenneth was found unresponsive in his Alaska prison cell at about 7am local time. He was pronounced dead at 7.42am.

According to a statement from the Alaska Department of Corrections, Kenneth's death was not related to Covid-19, and foul play is not suspected.


The couple and their three kids were traveling on the Emerald Princess cruise ship to celebrate their 18th wedding anniversary.

Kenneth apparently snapped after Kristy laughed at him and then told him she wanted to get a divorce.

The couple's daughters could reportedly hear Kristy's screams.

The couple's three daughters were present to hear their mother's screams as their father pummeled their mother in the head with closed fists, the Associated Press reported.

Other family relatives were also present on the cruise ship. Not only did the couple's three children partly witness their mother's murder, but Kenneth's brothers and father did as well, the AP reported.

Kenneth’s defense team argued he suffered from an undiagnosed bipolar disorder, had been mixing booze with meds, and was afflicted with brain abnormalities brought on by years of playing contact sports, according to the AP.

His lawyers argued for a more lenient sentence of 7 ½ years. Meanwhile, prosecutors argued he should be put away for life.


On the night of Kristy's murder, cruise ship passengers had been expecting to partake in a Sherlock Holmes murder mystery event.

As the real murder of the mom of three unfolded, many passengers presumed it was all part of the ship’s prearranged entertainment.

Passenger Natalie Beckstrom told St. George News that the murder mystery was interrupted when someone came over the intercom calling for medical and security personnel.

“He sounded a little breathless as he was talking," Beckstrom said.

“...that’s kind of what everybody in the room was thinking was that it was just part of the play... So, you know, we all just kind of sat down and went on with the play.”

Beckstrom later saw a man who was covered in blood appear from the hallway speak to a woman who was next to a 13-year-old girl sheathed in a blanket.

She heard him say to the woman: “It doesn’t look good.”

“And so, at that point, the 13-year-old just lost it - she just started sobbing, ‘I want my mommy. I want my mommy,'" Beckstrom recalled.