A Ku Klux Klan leader’s widow has admitted to fatally shooting him and then dumping his body, reversing a previous claim that blamed her son for the murder.
Malissa Ancona of Missouri pleaded guilty on Friday to second-degree murder, tampering with evidence and abandonment of a corpse on Friday. She was sentenced to life in prison for the 2017 killing of Frank Ancona, The Kansas City Star reported.
“I fired both shots that killed my husband,” Ancona told the St. Francois County judge as part of a plea deal, according to the Star.
Frank Ancona’s body was found near a Missouri river days after he was reported missing in early February of 2017. The 51-year-old called himself an imperial wizard of the Traditionalist American Knights near St. Louis.
Malissa and her son, Paul Edward Jinkerson Jr., who was Frank Ancona’s stepson, were charged days later in his death. At the time, Malissa told authorities that her son, then 24, was the one who shot the KKK leader and that she had helped clean up the mess and conceal the murder. Frank Ancona was killed after he told her that he wanted a divorce, she said at the time.
In a jailhouse letter obtained by The St. Louis Post-Dispatch last year, Ancona reportedly changed her story, claiming that she was “under the influence” when she told detectives that it was her son who pulled the trigger.
Jinkerson also faces first-degree murder charges as well as abandoning a corpse and tampering with evidence. It’s not yet clear whether the murder charge will be dropped because of Malissa’s guilty plea.