OXFORD, Miss. — Brandon Theesfeld, the man accused of killing University of Mississippi student Ally Kostial in 2019, pleaded guilty to first degree murder on Friday.
Theesfeld was led into court Friday handcuffed in a bright orange jumpsuit and escorted by four officers.
“Sorry for the pain I caused you. I wish I could take it back if I can. There is no excuse for my action. I have asked God for forgiveness. I hope one day that you will find it in your hearts to forgive me,” Theesfeld told the judge, in response to Kostial’s family.
Kostial, 21, was found dead near Sardis Lake in Mississippi in July 2019. Authorities say she died from multiple gunshot wounds.
The district attorney’s office revealed during the hearing Kostial was likely pregnant by Theesfeld, and he was against her having the baby. Upset by the situation, they say he got a gun and killed her.
“It’s extremely sad that this had occurred our prayers and thoughts are with the Kostial family and it with the Theesfeld family,” Theesfeld’s attorney Tony Farese said.
The murder case captivated people from St. Louis, where Kostial from, to Lafayette County, Mississippi, where she studied business. After seemingly no movement in court because of COVID, now there’s a guilty plea Friday from her former classmate Theesfeld.
After the judge ruled that he was competent to stand trial, the prosecution gave its account of events. The judge said that there was “sufficient factual basis” for this case.
As a result, Theesfeld will be sentenced to life in prison. He had previously pleaded not guilty to capital murder. Theesfeld could be up for parole at the age of 65.
“We are sadden for the Kostial family but happy that we can get this matter resolved and that prevented any further degree,” said Assistant District Attorney Mickey Mallette.
“We, on the other hand, are grateful that we obtained this result,” Farese said. “We think we’ve spared his life and, there are different types of victories in these situations.”
Kostial graduated from Lindbergh High School in St. Louis in 2016. She was a member of Alpha Phi sorority at the University of Mississippi.
Theesfeld, originally from the Dallas area, was studying business at the University of Mississippi. He was captured a few days after the killing at a gas station in Memphis.