Watch CBSN Live

Va. woman, 29, admits to fatally beating 77-yr.-old boyfriend with cane

Kristina Pongracz faces up to 40 years in prison for fatal beating of Herchenrider in 2010
William Herchenrider, 77, and Kristina Pongracz, 29 Personal Photo

(CBS/AP) BEDFORD, Va. - A 29-year-old Virginia woman faces up to 40 years in prison after pleading no contest to fatally beating her 77-year-old boyfriend with his own cane.

Yes, she had a 77-year-old boyfriend.

Pictures: Kristina Pongracz

William Herchenrider was found with serious injuries May 2010 at his mansion in rural southern Virginia. Police said Kristina Pongracz, who was 28 at the time, beat Herchenrider with his own cane because he tried to break off their relationship and throw her out of his home in Goode, about 35 miles east of Roanoke.

Although Herchenrider survived the initial beating, he died in August after several months of hospitalization.

On Tuesday, the day Pongracz was to stand trial, she pleaded no contest to second-degree murder in Bedford County Circuit Court. The judge ordered a presentencing report.

The charge carries a five-to 40-year prison term and a fine of up to $100,000.

More on Crimesider
February 18, 2011 - Kristina Pongracz (PICTURES): Younger girlfriend could face murder charge in 77-year-old's death

View CBS News In