Since its debut in 1992, NBC’s “Dateline,” which features gripping mysteries and stirring documentaries, has captured viewers’ attention. It has managed to establish itself as a mainstay for the newsmagazine genre with its huge history of in-depth investigative journalism, focusing mostly on true-crime stories that have rocked the nation. ‘Open Water,’ its most recent episode, which details Micki Kanesaki’s murder, is no exception. This particular episode focuses on the specifics of this case, including the greed, betrayal, and viciousness. And if you’re interested in learning more about the same, we have the information for you.
How Did Micki Kanesaki Die?
On May 21, 2006, Lonnie Loren Kocontes and his second ex-wife, Micki Kanesaki, travelled from California to Spain and boarded a low-cost cruise ship. The pair travelled to the Italian town of Messina four days later, returning to the yacht in the evening. Some stories state that Micki was last seen by onlookers aboard at about 11 p.m. that same evening. And Lonnie said he discovered Micki was missing when he awoke at around 4:30 in the morning. Soon after, he alerted the authorities and said that she might have overboarded from their room’s balcony after becoming ill from too much wine.
The 52-year-old’s body was found on May 27, 2006, the day after Lonnie went back to California, by the crew of a search vessel. Off the Italian coast of Paola, in the Mediterranean Sea, she had been floating. The physician who performed Micki’s autopsy claimed that a “violent action that was continued on for a period of time” as well as a blunt force trauma to her head were to blame for the injuries she sustained to the base of her neck, including a shattered bone. In addition, Micki’s lungs were full of air, indicating that she had already passed away before hitting the water. She had been strangled, it was ultimately found.
Who Killed Micki Kanesaki?
His second ex-wife, Micki Kanesaki, was killed by Lonnie Loren Kocontes. He did end up being a suspect very early in the investigations since the detectives thought it odd that a couple who had previously broken up would embark on a romantic Mediterranean cruise. However, Lonnie was let go because he insisted that he and Micki had made up and were even considering getting married again.
However, he came under scrutiny once more in 2008 when he was the subject of a federal inquiry for attempting to move $1 million between several bank accounts belonging to his late wife. But when his third wife, Amy Nguyen, whom he had married and divorced before Micki’s murder, testified on his favour before a federal grand jury, the case against him was dropped.
But Amy changed her story when the Orange County DA’s Office eventually took up the case. She testified before a county grand jury in June 2013 that her ex-husband, who had by then relocated to Safe Harbour, Florida, had in fact warned her in the past that he intended to kill Micki and would be “taking matters into his own hands.” She also mentioned that she had previously lied as a result of Lonnie’s pressure.
Lonnie Loren Kocontes was thus charged with first-degree murder in 2013 along with the special circumstance enhancement of murder with the intent to profit. Considering that Lonnie was named as the sole beneficiary of multiple bank accounts and the proceeds from the sale of a house that Micki didn’t want to put on the market, the prosecution claimed that Lonnie committed this crime in order to inherit more than $1 million.
They added that he had planned every move and had “specifically asked for a balcony room” on their cruise because he had “carefully calculated all his actions.” They continued by saying that Lonnie tried to kill his third wife when she offered to testify against him, in addition to strangling his second wife and throwing her body overboard. After all of it, Lonnie’s guilt on the accusations against him was determined.
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