JASPER COUNTY — A DeMotte man pleaded guilty to murdering his wife during a pretrial conference Friday afternoon in the Jasper County Circuit Court.
Joseph Carmen Borgia III, 37, appeared in court before Judge John Potter Friday alongside his lawyers Harry Joseph Falk and Jacob Ahler. He faced charges of murder, two counts of neglect of a dependent where a situation endangers the dependents and possession of marijuana.
A jury trial had been scheduled for Oct. 5 before Borgia decided to enter a plea.
“He pleaded guilty to the elements of the crime,” said Jasper County Prosecutor Jacob Taulman.
Borgia also pleaded guilty to one count of the neglect of dependent charge.
Borgia will be back in court on Wednesday, Oct. 7 at 9 a.m. for sentencing. He faces a minimum of 47 years in prison with a maximum of 55 years. He also faces the possibility of no contact with either of his children until they turn at least 18 years of age.
Borgia was arrested on Friday, Aug. 24, 2018, after Jasper County Sheriff’s deputies were called to Whispering Woods Drive in DeMotte at approximately 8:25 p.m.
The Keener Fire Department was notified of a residential structure fire in that area. Multiple fire units, medics and deputies responded to the scene.
It was later revealed that Borgia, a firefighter in DeMotte, asked to have a fire truck sent to his house.
Instead of fire, however, units on the scene found a deceased woman, identified as 35-year-old Amanda Borgia of DeMotte. An investigation at the scene concluded she had died from stab wounds received while she was inside the residence. Her body was taken into custody by the Jasper County Coroner’s Office for a forensic investigation.
Joseph Borgia was found outside the residence with his two young children. According to reports, blood residue was visible on his body and he was “in a highly agitated state.” Blood was on the children as well, according to court documents.
The children were immediately taken into protective custody until Child Protective Services arrived. They were later released to family members.
According to court documents released days after the incident, Borgia smoked a one-hitter that Friday night, went into the kitchen, grabbed a large knife and stabbed his wife to death. During an interview, Borgia reportedly told police that his wife yelled at their young sons to get her cellphone before he stabbed her eight or nine times.
A charging report said Amanda Borgia was found by firefighters with a knife stuck in her back. Joseph Borgia told police he and his wife had been having marital problems.