A Detroit man charged with killing his estranged wife whose two children remain missing has pleaded guilty to a reduced murder charge in an agreement with prosecutors.

The Wayne County prosecutor's office said Friday that Erin Justice first declined the offer to plead guilty to second-degree murder instead of face trial on charges including first-degree murder, but soon accepted the plea agreement.

The 29-year-old faces 45 to 80 years in prison for the murder charge when sentenced Sept. 22. A first-degree murder conviction is punishable by mandatory life in prison without parole.

Alicia Fox's body was found in June 2014. Kaylah Hunter was 6 years old and Kristian Justice was 8 months when they and Fox were reported missing in May 2014.