Lexington County man who stabbed wife in the heart sentenced to 45 years with no parole

WEST COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - A man who beat his wife in the head with a blunt instrument, stabbed her in the heart, and then buried her body in an unmarked grave near Little Mountain, SC, has been convicted of Murder and sentenced to 45 years in prison with no chance of parole.

Marion C. Wilkes, 76, reported his wife missing on June 14, 2014, to law enforcement, but an investigation by the West Columbia Police Department discovered her remains buried on Gardenia Court in Little Mountain. She was in a shallow, unmarked grave.

Wilkes was arrested and confessed to the killing of his wife. He discarded evidence of the crime at River Chase Collection Center, where Wilkes was seen on surveillance footage throwing various items into a trash compactor a day before reporting his wife as missing.

An autopsy showed that Susan Wilkes, 59, died from a stab wound to the heart and multiple blows to the head causing skull fractures and lacerations. She was killed in the family home. Marion used cleaning chemicals to eliminate evidence from the scene, according to police.

Marion also fabricated a story surrounding Susan's disappearance when discussing the situation with Susan's family members.

The couple was married for 34 years.

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