A Utah man accused of beating his wife to death aboard a cruise ship has admitted responsibility in the 2017 slaying.

Kenneth Manzanares pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for killing Kristy Manzanares on the Emerald Princess Cruise ship two and a half years ago, the U.S Justice Department announced Friday.

The ship was docked in U.S. waters outside Southeast Alaska on July 25, 2017 when the couple broke into an argument inside their cabin. Their daughter and another child were with them at the time.

“According to admissions made in connection with the plea, Kenneth and Kristy Manzanares became involved in a verbal argument about Kenneth’s behavior that evening, and during the discussion Kristy stated she wanted a divorce and told him to disembark the vessel at Juneau in order for him to travel back home to Utah,” according to the Department of Justice news release.

At that point, Kenneth Manzanares dismissed the children to an adjoining room, where other relatives had been staying. It didn’t prevent them from witnessing the fight continue, though. They listened to screaming from the neighboring cabin but could not get back inside their own.

The children then moved onto a balcony connecting the rooms, where they “observed Kenneth Manzanares straddling Kristy Manzanares on the floor, striking her in the head with closed fists.”

First responders attempted to revive the mother, but she succumbed to the injuries she sustained during the violent beating. Officials said her cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head and face.

Kenneth Manzanares was arrested the following morning on July 26, 2017 and has remained in federal custody ever since.

“Every year, millions of visitors come to Alaska to marvel at the stunning scenery of the Great Land,” U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder said in a statement.

“The vast majority have safe experiences that provides a lifetime of memories. However, on those rare occasions where a crime is committed on a visitor, especially a brutal crime like the murder of Kristy Manzanares, rest assured the Alaskan law enforcement community will act to bring our perpetrator to justice. Our heart go out to the family and those close to Kristy Manzanares.”

Her husband faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and fine of up to $250,000.