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Pennsylvania Man Pleads Guilty To Killing Wife With Fire Poker After Accusing Her Of Affair
“I know my words won’t mean much, I’m really sorry. I wish I could take it back,” Daniel Barrett said in court Monday.
A Pennsylvania man has pleaded guilty to viciously beating his wife to death with a fire poker over his suspicions that she was having an affair.
Daniel Barrett, 40, entered a guilty plea for the violent first-degree murder of his 43-year-old wife, Mary Bradley Barrett, in January of 2021, according to a statement from Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s office.
“Today, Daniel Barrett pled guilty to the horrific murder of his wife, and was sentenced to life in prison for his unthinkable crimes,” Shapiro said. “I grieve for her loved ones and hope this helps bring some justice and closure for this terrible loss.”
The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reported that, in court, Mary Bradley Barrett's parents told her killer that her tombstone won't carry his last name.
Authorities say that Barrett killed his wife in their historic Plymouth, Pennsylvania home on Jan. 9, 2021 after accusing her of cheating on him, according to court documents obtained by Wilkes-Barre Fox affiliate WOLF.
He later told police that he flew into a jealous rage and punched her in the face before, he said, he blacked out. He regained normal consciousness, he claimed, while standing over his wife with a pair of fire tongs over his head. He said that he then beat her with the tongs and a nearby fire poker before grabbing a knife and stabbing her repeatedly in the back, authorities said.
Daniel Barrett also told police that he went to splash some water on his face after the beating and heard his dying wife making noises. He later dragged her body down the stairs into the basement, where he left it. The fire poker was still tangled in her hair when police discovered the body — after Daniel confessed to the brutal crime two days later.
“I know my words won’t mean much, I’m really sorry. I wish I could take it back,” Daniel said in court Monday, according to The Times Leader, after emotional statements from Mary’s family.
Mary Bradley Barrett had served in United States Air Force and was the mother of a teenage daughter.
Karen Mercer, Mary Bradley Barrett’s sister, called her someone who “lived in the current moment” and was “free spirited.”
“Mary saw the good in people,” she said.
Brady Barrett's mother, Beverly Bradley, remembered her daughter as an animal lover who used to volunteer at an animal shelter in Florida and once rescued a cat from a busy highway.
“Her heart was huge and Daniel took advantage of that,” she said.
Her father, Allen Bradley, recalled how his daughter had qualified for the Olympics in sharp shooting but opted to serve her country instead by enlisting in the Air Force after high school, describing her as a “great gift from God.”
They had harsh words for their daughter's killer, describing Daniel Barrett as a “narcissist” who had been a “master manipulator.”
Daniel received a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole, WNEP reports.
After her death, the Plymouth Planning Agency created an award in Mary Bradley Barrett’s honor to recognize historic homes in the area. Karen Mercer said that her sister's own historic home had been her “pride and joy.”