Howie Centre man pleads guilty to second-degree murder in wife's death
A man from Howie Centre, N.S., has pleaded guilty to the second-degree murder of his wife.
Gregory James Dilney was 73 years old when he strangled Brenda Dilney after an argument at their home in March 2021. She was 71 at the time.
The case was set to go to trial next month, but on Friday, Dilney admitted to killing his wife.
Crown attorney Peter Harrison said the case was unusual, because of Dilney's age, the violence of the act and the man's lack of a criminal record.
"It was a very difficult case," Harrison said. "It's a tragic set of circumstances on both sides. These two were married for a long time and unfortunately, Mr. Dilney killed Brenda Dilney."
Agreed facts read in court
According to an agreed statement of facts read in court, Cape Breton Regional Police were sent to the couple's home on March 5 after Dilney called 911 and said that he had murdered his wife.
At the direction of a dispatcher, Dilney performed CPR unsuccessfully.
Police officers took over when they arrived, but also failed to revive the woman.
Dilney was arrested at the scene and was described as co-operative.
In court, Justice Robin Gogan read out the agreed facts and questioned Dilney closely to make sure he understood what he was admitting.
Dilney matter-of-factly agreed that he knew what he was doing when he killed his wife.
Harrison said there is only one sentence for second-degree murder and that is life in prison.
A hearing will be held May 5 to determine Dilney's parole eligibility, which can range from 10 to 25 years.
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