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Story by Larry Fitzpatrick - The Oregon Herald
Published on Tuesday March 1, 2011 - 9:20 AM
 
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SPRINGFIELD, Oregon - After a grand jury indicted him for killing his wife, William Wiggins changed his plea to guilty of manslaughter so as to face 10 years in prison instead of 25 years to life.

Wiggins told police that his wife, in her early 60's, drowned in her hot tub but charged him with murder five months later.

Police say Wiggins could have gotten away with murder if they had not searched his wife's body for clues to her death.

"The investigators did a good job at examining him," prosecutors say. "We found what we thought were what I feel are defense wounds on him, which raised our suspicion level and ultimately led to where we are at today, having him convicted."

"Andrea was the love of my life and I will never forget her," said Wiggins to the judge.

The victim's father, Jack Nicholson, asked the judge for at least a 10-year sentence, saying his daughter was a "precious and special person" that she "worked all her life trying to make things better."

Police say Wiggins and his wife Andrea, an assistant dean at the University of Oregon's College of Education, had a troubled marriage.