May 9, 2024

Missouri man killed wife because he couldn’t afford her medical bills 

A 75-year-old Missouri man has been charged with the murder of his wife after allegedly strangling her in a hospital bed because he could not care for her properly or pay her medical bills.

Police say that Ronnie Wiggs visited his wife Ellen earlier this month. She was in hospital to change the port for her dialysis treatment. About an hour later, hospital staff were called to the room of the 72-year-old woman after an apparent cardiac arrest. She was unresponsive and later found to be brain dead. After retrieving her organs for transplant, she was pronounced dead. 

However, staff noticed bruising and abrasions on Mrs Wiggs’s throat. Someone overhead her husband saying: “I did it, I killed her, I choked her”. 

Mr Wiggs later told police that he had tried to kill his wife twice before while she was in hospital. The first time his wife woke up and told him not to try it again. The second time he was foiled by all the several monitors to which his wife was connected. 

The death of Ellen Wiggs is not euthanasia, but it is an example of the desperation that may overcome people who are caring for sick and elderly spouses.