By Chris Harris
March 06, 2019 01:45 PM
Advertisement
Credit: Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office

A Texas man who prosecutors contend abused his wife for years before strangling her to death in 2016 accepted a plea deal this week that’ll see him serve 35 years behind prison bars.

Jonathan Allee, 31, was in court in Texas’ Harris County on Tuesday to plead guilty to murdering his wife, Elizabeth Ferrell, who was 28 at the time of her death, according to multiple outlets.

Allee strangled his wife at their home in Humble, Texas, before driving her nude body to Louisiana with the couple’s two daughters — ages 1 and 5 — where he dumped it in a bay, the Houston Chronicle reports.

Their 5-year-old daughter told authorities Allee said he was taking her and her sister on a road trip. Sometime during the drive, the Chronicle reports the girl told investigators Allee stopped the car and removed something from the back of the vehicle, but the little girl said she did not know what it was.

Jonathan Allee
| Credit: Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office

A fisherman found the body days later. Allee told police he last saw his wife on April 21, 2016, but that later, when he returned home, she was gone.

Ferrell died from strangulation, but the Associated Press reports her body also showed signs of blunt force trauma.

An inmate came forward after Allee allegedly confessed to strangling his wife and stomping on her neck.

ABC 13 reports Ferrell’s relatives expressed dismay over the plea deal.

“I can’t express what this sentencing today means to all of us,” Ferrell’s best friend, Melissa Bell, said in a victim impact statement, quoted by The Chronicle. “Jonathan spent years abusing Elizabeth before eventually killing her and tossing her body away like a piece of trash. The possibility of a violent and calculated monster walking amongst innocent people after any amount of time served will never feel like justice.”

Allee’s lawyer was unavailable for comment Wednesday.

• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.

But the Chronicle did speak to him after Tuesday’s proceedings, and he said his client is also upset with his sentence.

“In my experience as both a prosecutor and a defense attorney, what I have found is if neither side is happy, it’s probably a fair result,” attorney Dorian C. Cotlar explained.