Randall Freeman pleads guilty in wife’s murder

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The man recently indicted in the death of his wife, Keila Freeman, has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

Randall Freeman took a plea deal Wednesday that stipulated he'd spend 28 years in prison if he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and all of his arson charges.

He will not be eligible for parole.

The announcement comes just hours after Freeman was indicted by a Shelby County Grand Jury.

"You're asking this court to find you guilty without a trial and accept this punishment that has been recommended on your case. Is that want you want to do sir?" the judge asked.

Freeman responded with a timid "Yes sir."

Keila Ashford Freeman

According to the Memphis Police Department, Keila Freeman's remains were discovered off Barnstable Road near South Germantown Road in December, nearly a year and a half after she went missing from her southeast Memphis home.

Prosecutors say her husband told them where to go.

"That night when he revealed the location of the body, he was quiet. He was breathing so heavy though, you could hear it from across the room," Prosecutor Paul Hagerman said.

Related: Remains positively identified as missing mother, husband charged

Freeman was already in jail for fire bombing the house of a man he thought his wife was having an affair with.

Prosecutors planned it that way, hoping he'd eventually admit to his wife's murder.

"Let's prove these arson cases. Let's get him in jail and then once he's in jail, let's start applying some pressure to him. Let's start listening to his jail phone calls," Hagerman said.

Hagerman says this was one of the toughest cases he's had.

"This is a crazy case right? This is a crazy case. A missing woman. No trace of any violence in the house. No physical evidence at all. She was missing for over a year," he said.

Hagerman doesn't know if Freeman is sorry for what he did.

"Whether he's remorseful or not I think is a conversation he may have with the family at one point, or he may not," the prosecutor said.

Keila's sister, Kendra Hightower, says it'll take time to forgive Freeman.

"I'm struggling with that," she says, "Just like this has taken time to get closure, it'll take time for me to forgive."

She says Keila and Randall's two young children are living with their grandparents and doing fine.

"We try to keep them pretty much busy and active just as they were before," Hightower says.

She says it's been an emotional roller coaster, but her family is happy to finally have closure.

"We were just waiting so long that we just wanted to get her (Keila) the proper home-going," Hightower says.