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Petaluma man who strangled wife deemed ready for release from prison

The Petaluma man being held in state prison for the 2002 slaying of his wife was recommended for parole Friday during a hearing conducted by members of the California Board of Parole Hearings.

Michael DeLongis, 57, who is serving a 23-years-to-life prison sentence at Vacaville’s California Medical Facility, was deemed ready for release from the institution during the Friday hearing, moving his case to a 120-day review period that includes a full evaluation by the California Board of Parole Hearings, board spokesman Joe Orlando said.

The case will be forwarded to Gov. Gavin Newsom near the end of the 120 days, in which Newsom can uphold, reverse or modify the parole agreement, or take no action. He could also return the case to the board for additional examination.

DeLongis was convicted of second-degree murder and spousal abuse in 2003 for the death of his wife, Kimberly DeLongis.

The 46-year-old businesswoman and mother of two adult children from a previous relationship was found lying at the bottom of a staircase at the couple’s west Petaluma home in 2002.

DeLongis initially reported the incident as a fall but later confessed to officers that he shoved his wife down the stairs and strangled her after becoming angry, police said.

The pair had argued about DeLongis’ drinking and Kimberly DeLongis had asked him for a divorce the morning of her death, police said.

Since his conviction, DeLongis remarried and was certified in literary Braille through a program at the Ironwood State Prison reserved for inmates with good behavior, according to a 2014 TED Talk he participated in.

Both Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch, who prosecuted the 2003 case, and Thora Collard, one of Kimberly DeLongis’ two children, attended Friday’s hearing, though neither was available for an interview Friday afternoon. Neither wanted to see DeLongis released on parole, they said earlier this month.

DeLongis could be released as early as Jan. 25, 2022, Ravitch said in an email. His wife, Deborah Glacken, could not be reached by phone Friday afternoon for comment.

You can reach Staff Writer Nashelly Chavez at 707-521-5203 or nashelly.chavez@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @nashellytweets.

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