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US man buries wife alive in hand-dug grave


A 62-year-old Arizona man, David Pagniano, has been sentenced to life without parole after pleading guilty to murdering his wife by burying her alive on May 9 2017.

It was reported that the accused kidnapped his 39 year old entranged wife Sandra Pagniano and drove to a remote location and buried alive in Prescott, Arizona.

A press release by the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said that the victim, who has two daughters with her killer, was amid divorce proceedings with her ex-husband at the time and was bound and gagged” and buried in a “hand-dug grave.”

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The Sheriff’s Office launched an investigation into the disappearance of Sandra in 2017 following suspicious circumstances during a contentious divorce, which later led to her discovery.

The Yavapai County Attorney Dennis McGranehe said, “My Office pursued the death penalty in this case because of the horrific circumstances surrounding the abduction and murder of a young mother.

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“Sandra was kidnapped from her home while her children slept nearby, bound in packing tape, driven to a remote location and buried alive.

“The evidence revealed she vigorously struggled while she was in the grave and was likely conscious for up to five minutes after being buried. I hope the life sentence brings some closure to the victim’s family.”

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Pagniano received an additional sentence of 16.5 years in prison for kidnapping, fraud schemes and forgery.