Republican candidate charged with spousal murder wins primary from jail as he awaits trial for killing wife when she found out he was cheating on her
Andrew Wilhoite, 39, has been charged with the homicide after he admitted that he struck his wife in the face with a flowerpot around March 24
Andrew of Lebanon, Indiana, then allegedly dumped the body of Elizabeth ‘Nikki’ Wilhoite, 41, in a creek near their family home
The alleged attack occurred following a row about Andrew’s admitted infidelity, while Nikki underwent chemotherapy for breast cancer
He’s been in jail since he was charged with spousal homicide in late March
The murder suspect was up for election on the Clinton Township Board and won in his primary on Tuesday
He won 60 votes and can could still be on the ballot for the election in November, even though he will likely still be behind bars
Wilhoite has until June 15 to remove his name from the ballot and will not be able to hold office if convicted
A Republican candidate charged with murdering his breast cancer survivor wife has won his primary for Indiana town position from jail while awaiting trial.
Elizabeth ‘Nikki’ Wilhoite, 41, was killed after her husband, Andrew Wilhoite, 39, struck her with a gallon-size cement flowerpot after she found out he was having an affair during her chemotherapy treatment, according to a probable cause affidavit.
Nikki, who reportedly charged at her husband during a confrontation about his alleged affair after she had filed for divorce, fell to the ground after being struck.
Police began investigating Nikki’s death on March 25, after her co-workers at Indiana Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery reported that the mother-of-two and stepmom-of-one did not show up for work.
During the initial call to authorities, one co-worker claimed Nikki ‘was having issues with her husband’. Court records show that Elizabeth Wilhoite filed for divorce from Andrew Wilhoite on March 17, just one week before she went missing.
‘It was not like Elizabeth not to show up for work,’ the colleague told police.
Wilhoite was up for election on the Clinton Township Board and won in his primary on Tuesday.
Ironically, the murder suspect won 60 votes and can could still be on the ballot for the election in November, even though he will likely still be behind bars, the Tribune-Herald reported.
Brad King, co-director of the bipartisan Indiana Election Division told the newspaper there is ‘no reason’ he can’t be a candidate, because ‘under our system you are innocent until you are proven guilty.
He has until June 15 to withdraw his name and, if he is convicted, he will not be able to hold the position.
The Boone County Coroner ruled Nikki’s death a homicide following her autopsy.
Andrew Wilhoite was charged with the murder of his wife days later, court records reveal.
Elizabeth Wilhoite was mother to her husband’s daughter from a previous relationship, shared two biological daughters with her Andrew. And when police investigating Nikki’s whereabouts made a welfare call at Wilhoite’s farmhouse home, at the instance of her co-workers, the officers were greeted by the three children who indicated Nikki was not home and they had been unable to reach her.
‘Elizabeth might be with her sister,’ Nikki’s stepdaughter told police, adding: ‘Elizabeth leaves when she gets upset.’
As police prepared to leave the farm, Andrew ‘pulled into the driveway in a blue tractor’ and informed police his wife was missing.
According to the affidavit, ‘Andrew stated that they had a pretty good fight last night, and she was drunk.’
He also allegedly pointed to scratch marks on his neck, suggesting they were evidence of the encounter between the couple.
The accused murderer then proceeded to tell police his wife spent Thursday night sleeping on the couch and that he did not see her the next morning when he left to ‘haul corn.’
‘Andrew stated that he was laying in the bed and Elizabeth was flipping out,’ the affidavit alleged.
‘Andrew advised that it is not the first time that an incident like this has occurred. Andrew Wilhoite stated that he’s done things to Elizabeth that he shouldn’t have before.’
He alleged his wife had withdrawn $3,000 from their joint bank account and ‘had a lawyer and was filing for divorce.’
Andrew then advised police he feared ‘maybe something drug-related… occurred’ with his wife.
However, police claim Andrew’s apparent lies began to unravel after officers spoke to Elizabeth’s father, Thomas Richards, who confirmed she withdrew money on March 18 because ‘she was going to have to divorce Andrew.’
The victim’s father also told police he believed Andrew ‘did something to Elizabeth.’
When police searched the Wilhoite’s property, they discovered blood on bed sheets and a pillow in the master bedroom, as well as ‘small droplets on and around the door and inside the master bathroom on the sink.’
Indiana State Police were called to assist with the investigation and interviewed Andrew, during which he reportedly confessed to the affair, claiming Nikki ‘had taken the news hard.’
He told investigators that the couple had agreed to work through his infidelity, alleging they planned to start going to counseling in May, and that he was blindsided by Nikki’s request for a divorce.
‘Andrew stated that he refused to sign the documents without his own attorney reviewing it,’ the affidavit added.
Later during that interrogation, Andrew also admitted to killing Nikki after she had begun yelling at him about the affair, started ‘physically striking’ him and ordered him to leave the family home.