Man pleads guilty to murdering 15-year-old sister-in-law

Jun 20, 2012

An Orleans County man pleaded guilty today to one count of second-degree murder in the killing of his 15-year-old sister-in-law. 

22-year-old Carlos Cardenas admitted to the crime Wednesday morning in Orleans County Court.  He was accused of raping and strangling Katherine Sanchez in January 2011.  Cardenas was arrested the following month. 

Cardenas submitted a signed confession to the court, saying he had consensual sex with Sanchez, then strangled her when she threatened to tell her sister.  Cardenas was married to Kimberly Sanchez.  Authorities discovered Katherine's body in an apple orchard.

Cardenas faced two counts of second-degree murder and two counts of rape as jury selection was about to begin this morning in Albion.  As part of the plea deal, the rape charges were dropped.

Cardenas faces 25 years to life in prison at his sentencing in August.  The Associated Press reports Cardenas faces possible deportation to his native Mexico.