Oneonta man who admitted to killing boyfriend sentenced to 20 years

The Oneonta man who pleaded guilty to killing his boyfriend last year was sentenced to prison time Friday morning in Otsego County Court.

Posted: Mar 30, 2018 11:57 AM
Updated: Mar 30, 2018 6:23 PM

COOPERSTOWN – The Oneonta man who pleaded guilty to killing his boyfriend last year was sentenced to prison time Friday morning in Otsego County Court.

Joshua Underwood, 25, has been sentenced to 20 years in state prison. He previously pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter in exchange for the 20-year prison sentence.

Officials say around 3:30 a.m. Jan. 1, 2017, Underwood called 911 and reported that he had killed his boyfriend, 52-year-old Mark Morrison of Oneonta. Police found Morrison dead in his Main Street apartment and they say he was killed by blunt force trauma to the head. Police say Underwood tried to conceal the crime by stuffing the apartment doorway with newspapers and setting them on fire.

Underwood was originally scheduled to be sentenced in mid-December, but at that time he instead tried to withdraw his guilty plea for first-degree manslaughter, claiming he was coerced by the public defender’s assistant assigned to the case.

In court on Friday, when Underwood was asked if he had anything to say before he was to be sentenced, he said, "What happened was horrible and I regret it everyday."

Otsego County District Attorney John Muehl talked after Friday's sentencing about his decison to offer Underwood a plea deal, "The defense had him evaluated, and there was some evidence of, not a mental disease or defect, but evidence of the fact that he may have acted up under extreme emotional distress at the time that it happened, which I felt was sufficient to reduce the charge from murder to manslaughter. Which, if the jury had found that he acted under extreme emotional distress the jury would have been required to return a verdict of manslaughter instead of murder, so I felt that there was enough there to convince a jury to do that, so I made that offer instead of putting everybody through a trial."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2511182

Reported Deaths: 56008
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings33248910839
Queens31448010282
Suffolk2384943593
Nassau2137303286
Bronx2071526748
New York1675934633
Westchester1434342338
Erie1056611940
Richmond886031932
Monroe837081182
Orange57270909
Rockland52918779
Onondaga51624757
Dutchess35451497
Albany30581388
Oneida28418582
Broome24183403
Niagara23854397
Saratoga20080198
Ulster17205278
Schenectady16584227
Rensselaer14669167
Putnam1243996
Chautauqua12308173
Oswego11505112
Chemung10772153
St. Lawrence10392126
Steuben10019173
Ontario9278110
Jefferson870974
Cayuga8600107
Sullivan842083
Wayne807484
Cattaraugus7613113
Genesee6933132
Herkimer6694126
Clinton665438
Tompkins646559
Fulton6244102
Madison6124102
Montgomery5878138
Livingston566871
Warren538682
Cortland529479
Tioga502571
Columbia4977111
Chenango464986
Allegany456296
Washington454667
Otsego453554
Greene435186
Wyoming434458
Orleans428587
Franklin421820
Lewis355638
Delaware352147
Seneca271963
Schoharie227621
Essex226331
Yates160528
Schuyler151817
Hamilton4343
Unassigned14826
Out of NY0310
Utica
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 60° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 61°
Oneonta
Partly Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 60° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 57°
Herkimer
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 61°
Old Forge
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 61°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Game Day Deals - New Deals Each Week
Chapter Aesthetic October Giveaway
Cool To Be Kind 2021
Looking for work or looking to hire? Check out the WKTV Job Fair!
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve