Former Marine Michael Owen allegedly strangled Kelly Owen after learning she was pregnant

By Chris Harris
January 30, 2020 12:13 PM
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Nassau County Police Department

Police on Long Island have made an arrest in the murder of Kelly Owen, a 27-year-old mother who was working on her nursing degree.

PEOPLE confirms that Michael Owen, Kelly’s estranged husband, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a single charge of second-degree murder stemming from the Jan. 15 killing in a South Farmingdale, New York, home.

Nassau County Homicide Det. Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick spoke to reporters about the arrest this week, saying the couple had separated in 2018 after a five-year marriage, but continued to have a “physical and intimate” relationship.

According to Fitzpatrick, Michael, 27, allegedly strangled Kelly after learning she was pregnant. The couple already have a daughter.

“He did not want this child,” said Fitzpatrick during a news conference. “He did not want to give her medical insurance. He had this new relationship he was involved in, and he was in a bad position.”

Police allege Michael was living with his new girlfriend at the time of the murder.

Michael, a former Marine sergeant, is being held without bond. Information on his attorney was unavailable Thursday.

Michael Owen
Nassau County Police Department

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Kelly was found dead on Jan. 15 in the home she shared with her parents and brother.

Her mother and father returned home that day at around 3:30 p.m. to find her car still in the driveway. She regularly assisted at her 6-year-old daughter’s after-school program, which began at 3 p.m.

Her parents rushed inside to find her not breathing and called 911.

She was pronounced dead about 10 minutes later.

Kelly, a nursing student on break from classes, died of asphyxiation, according to the coroner’s office, which confirmed she was pregnant.