A Missouri man has been found guilty of murdering his pregnant wife whose battered body was found about a week after she was reported missing in 2019.
Beau Rothwell, 31, was convicted on Thursday on charges including first-degree murder, tampering with physical evidence and abandonment of a corpse, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Rothwell Killed His Wife Following an Argument Over His Affair
During his trial, Rothwell, 31, confessed to killing his wife, Jennifer Rothwell, while denying the killing was premeditated and seeking a conviction on a lesser manslaughter count. The Creve Coeur resident testified that he clubbed his 28-year-old wife of four years to death with a mallet at their home on Nov. 11, 2019, during a heated argument over his affair with another woman.
The following day, Rothwell reported Jennifer missing. Police later found her car abandoned on the side of a busy intersection. Authorities said she was about six weeks pregnant when she died. In the days prior to her tragic death, Jennifer, who was a chemical engineer, had looked up "what to do if your husband is upset you are pregnant" on her cellphone, police said.
Rothwell Made a List of Pros and Cons Before Killing Jennifer
Prosecutors revealed during the trial that Rothwell had made a pros and cons list about his affair before killing Jennifer, the St. Louis Dispatch reported. He reportedly wrote "better sex life," "more respect," and "fresh start" as pros, and listed "half my assets/money," "trust is shaken/tainted," "my family disappointment," and "take on her kid with his probs," as cons.
According to Facebook messages shared by prosecutors, Rothwell told his mistress that 'part of him wanted Jennifer's pregnancy not to work out. "If there is a miscarriage or something I'll leave her after that and be with you," another message reads, according to FOX News.
Police Found Bleach, Blood-Stained Carpet at the Residence
She was found naked and in fetal position, with her head covered in a plastic bag on November 18. Rothwell testified that he hit his wife in the head from behind with a mallet, followed her as she stumbled toward the garage door and hit her again.
Police later found bottles of bleach at their residence and a wet, blood-stained carpet. The blood matched that of Jennifer's. Roth faces life in prison without the possibility of parole. His sentencing has been scheduled for July 8.