June 16, 2010

Blazej Kot Sentenced to 25 Years to Life for Wife’s Murder

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Former Cornell graduate student Blazej Kot received the maximum sentence Wednesday for the murder of his wife, Caroline Coffey, who was a postdoctoral student at the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Tompkins County Judge John Rowley sentenced Kot Wednesday morning to 25 years to life in prison.

On April 20, a jury convicted Kot, a 25-year-old New Zealand native, of three felony charges: second-degree murder, third-degree arson and tampering with physical evidence.

Kot had put forth an affirmative defense, and his defense attorney argued that Kot was suffering from “extreme emotional disturbance” when he fatally stabbed Coffey in the throat on June 2, 2009. Coffey’s body was found the next morning on a wooded trail in Taughannock Falls State Park.

Prosecutors successfully argued at trial that Kot killed Coffey in cold blood and set fire to the couple’s apartment to destroy the evidence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Author: Sun Staff