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Husband Sentenced for Burying Wife Alive After She Made Terrifying 911 Call from Apple Watch


A man was sentenced to 13 years in prison and three years in community custody on Monday, April 22, after pleading guilty to a second-degree attempted murder charge in early March.

Chae Kyong An, from Lacey Washington, buried his wife alive after the two got into an argument at the woman’s home in October of 2022. The couple was going through a separation at the time.

The victim read a statement in court recalling the attack, and detailing the lasting physical and emotional scars left by her husband.

She said she saw An at her home when she arrived home from church that day, prompting her to send her children to get ice cream because she didn’t want them to see their parents fighting.

After the kids left, she and An got into an argument, which is when the attack began.

She was able to contact 911 through her Apple Watch before An took the device away from her and smashed it.

The victim said An tied her arms, legs, eyes and mouth, and that he then loaded her into a van and drove her into the woods.

An put the victim into a shallow grave then threw sand over her.

She laid in the hole for 12 hours before she was able to get up and escape.

The victim said she begged for An to stop and asked him to think of their children, but he refused.

She called An saying: “I don’t need anything. Today, I’m going to kill you.”

The victim said she and her children still live in fear.

“After that day, I and my children’s life was crushed,” she said. “I have to live my life with emotional trauma and health issues for the rest of my life.”

The victim and the prosecution asked the judge to sentence An to the higher end of the standard sentencing range, which was agreed to by the defense upon reaching a plea deal.

“The state’s hope is that with sentencing today, Ms An will be offered some finality and closure that allows her and her children to begin a new phase in the healing process, and also for today’s sentencing to hold the defendant accountable for his goal-directed violent behaviour towards his wife,” a Thurston County deputy prosecutor said Monday.

An’s defence attorney also addressed the courtroom during the hearing, detailing the man’s struggle with mental illness, specifically PTSD, which he said contributed to his client’s actions on that day.

Husband who buried wife alive after she made terrifying 911 call from Apple Watch is sentenced

He said at the time of the attack, An was homeless, isolated from his friends and family and “overmedicated and undertreated” for his PTSD.

An’s attorney said he lives with “regret and remorse every day.”

An took the opportunity to read a statement to the courtroom, saying he was sorry for his actions and the way he negatively impacted his friends and family.

“I wish that I could go back and never enter that house that day and walk away,” An said.

A Thurston County Judge agreed with the state and the victim, opting to sentence the defendant to the higher end of the standard sentencing range for second-degree attempted murder.

He will serve 165 months in prison followed by 36 months probation. He has a lifetime no-contact order in regard to the victim.

“The crime you pled guilty to was horrific,” a judge said, addressing An in court.

“Preventing somebody from calling for help, assaulting, restraining and burying them alive. With the plea that you offered, you acknowledged responsibility for that.” The judge told the victim that she hoped the sentence would allow her to move forward.

“I’m sure there are no words that describe the physical suffering and the fear and anguish over twelve hours of thinking you might lose your life and you might never see your children again,” the judge said.

“You are strong and you are brave. I am hopeful that today’s hearing will be the close of this chapter, and will make it possible to focus on your emotional and mental healing for yourself and your children.”

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