CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A Kanawha County man was sentenced Tuesday to spend 30 years in prison with no chance for early release for the 2019 beating death of his girlfriend.
Wes Wild, 38, of Charleston, pleaded guilty on Dec. 23 to second-degree murder. He admitted to killing his girlfriend, Tressa Adkins, 57, at her apartment in Carroll Terrace on Charleston’s East End on Nov. 5,2019.
Wild apologized to the Adkins family during Tuesday’s sentencing.
“I wish this didn’t happen. I’m sorry I wish I could take it back. I’m sorry, sorry, sorry,” Wild said in a video feed from the South Central Regional Jail.
Adkins’ brother, William Adkins, said he personally believes Wild should receive the death penalty but said nothing he could say would bring his sister back.
“I hope you use this time to figure out who you are,” Adkins told Wild. “I hope you get some help. I hope do better. I hope you come out a changed man.”
Tressa Adkins died of blunt force trauma on various parts of her body. There was also evidence of choking, prosecutors said.
Adkins’ mother, Pat Adkins, indicated to the court that there was a history of abuse in the relationship.
“This should have never happened and no matter what I say and do it won’t bring her back. I think he should have been in the pen before now for the way he’s done to my daughter before,” Adkins said.
Kanawha County Circuit Judge Joanna Tabit said given the evidence she thought it was appropriate to accept the binding plea agreement. She also said Wild’s agreement to not seek early release was “critical and pivotal” in her decision.
“Not only is he going to be sentenced to 30 years but Mr. Wild has agreed specifically not to seek early release,” Tabit said.
Wild, who was originally charged with first-degree murder, told the court at his plea hearing last month he had previously suffered from both an alcohol addiction and mental health issues.
Wild originally reported Adkins’ death to Kanawha County Metro 911. He told a dispatcher things had gotten “too rough” between himself and Adkins.