NEW YORK – A butcher who hacked his wife to death on a Manhattan street with a boning knife because he thought she was cheating on him was sentenced Monday to 23 years to life in prison.
"Surely this was a culmination of anger at your wife because of your feelings of betrayal," Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus said as he sentenced Sergio Parra, 28. "You killed the mother of your daughter in such a brutal way that it is inexcusable."
Parra was convicted last month of second-degree murder in the Sept. 16, 2004, death of his wife, Jahaira Parra, 27, in their northern Manhattan neighborhood.
Parra's lawyer, David Blackstone, admitted his client killed his wife of three years but said he did it while suffering extreme emotional disturbance because she had left him.
Parra, who came from the Dominican Republic in 1996, was sentenced to two years less than the maximum 25 years to life because he had no prior arrest record and apparently had "psychological issues," the judge said.
Parra will be eligible for parole after 23 years.
"I'm very sorry for the death of my wife," Parra told the judge before sentencing.
Parra was arrested shortly after he had gone to the barbershop where his estranged wife worked as a cleaner and asked to speak with her, police said. Once outside, they said, he stabbed her more than 20 times, striking her in the chest and eyes while bystanders watched.
An auxiliary police officer grabbed Parra and held him with the help of several passers-by until more police came.