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A Missouri man is facing a second degree murder charge for strangling his wife to death as she was lying in a hospital bed over the weekend, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker announced.

According to court records, Ronnie Wiggs admitted to police that he killed his wife, who had come to the hospital for a new port for dialysis.

On Friday, May 3, just before 11:30 p.m., a uniformed officer working off duty at a hospital in Independence, Missouri, responded to the ICU unit in reference to an assault. A “Code Blue” was called on a victim, according to a probable cause statement.

A code blue hospital announcement typically means an adult is having a medical emergency – usually cardiac or respiratory arrest, according to the Cleveland Clinic.  

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Ronnie Wiggs is charged with killing his hospitalized wife. He told police he couldn’t take care of her or afford her medical bills, according to court records. (FOX5/Independence Police Dept. )

Wiggs was allegedly heard by medical staff saying, “I did it, I killed her, I choked her.”

Another witness pointed out suspicious injuries to the victim. The injuries observed were redness to the left and right side of the victim’s neck. Also observed was a fresh wound in the middle of the victim’s throat. The witness advised the injuries observed would not have been caused by resuscitation efforts.

Hospital staff managed to get her pulse back, but they determined she was brain-dead and made preparations to harvest her organs, according to the statement. 

Prosecutors said Wiggs confessed that he choked her and covered her nose and mouth to keep her from screaming.

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Centerpoint Medical Center

A Kansas City-area man who’s charged with killing his hospitalized wife told police he couldn’t take care of her or afford her medical bills, court records say. (Google Maps)

Wiggs then allegedly told police the reason he killed his wife was because he was depressed and couldn’t take care of her or afford the medical bills.

Wiggs also allegedly told officers that he tried to kill his wife two other times while she was hospitalized. He said he last attempted to kill his wife while she was at a rehabilitation facility for her medical issues. He said at that time he tried to choke her but could not follow through with it. Wiggs said his wife woke up and told him not to do that again, court documents say.

Wiggs allegedly also told police he was going to try to kill his wife another time, but he did not get the opportunity due to the fact the victim was hooked up to several monitors at the hospital.

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Wiggs made his first appearance Monday on a second-degree murder charge and was referred to the public defender’s office. A hearing was also set for Thursday to review his $250,000 bond.



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