CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) - The triplets of Jacque Waller have been officially adopted by Waller's sister and brother-in-law.
Bob and Cheryl Brenneke have been legal guardians of the now 8-year-old children since Waller went missing in the summer of 2011, soon after she and her estranged husband, Clay, met with an attorney in Jackson, Mo., to finalize divorce plans.
Clay Waller, the father of the triplets, led authorities to her body earlier this year on a Mississippi River island near Cape Girardeau. He is now serving a 20-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to second-degree murder.
KFVS-TV reports that the Brenneke's adoption of Maddox, Avery and Addison became official on Tuesday.
In an emotionally charged courtroom, Clay Waller told the judge he killed his wife Jacque Waller two years ago.
Now Waller is headed to prison to serve a 20 year sentence. As part of a plea deal, Waller told authorities where he buried his wife's body. He explained how he punched her in the face then strangled her to death.
Jacque's sister, Cheryl Brenneke, read a statement that saying she is unhappy with the sentence, but knows he will get "jailhouse justice". The judge accepted the deal and said Waller did not get what he deserved, but it will have to do.
Officials say he could serve as little as 85 percent of the sentence, but it is not likely.
A guilty plea is expected when Clay Waller appears in court this week. Waller is accused of murdering his wife, Jacque Waller. She went missing after telling people she was going to meet with her estranged husband in 2011. Search teams found her body last week across the river from Cape Girardeau. Clay Waller is already in prison for harassing Jacque's sister. If he submits the anticipated plea, the next step would be setting a sentencing date. The couple's triplets are now seven years old and live with Jacque's sister.
Almost two years to the day after Jacque Waller went missing, Cape Girardeau authorities say they found her body.
Waller, the mother of triplets, went to meet with her estranged husband Clay Waller on June 1, 2011. The two were getting together to talk about their divorce. Jacque was not seen alive after that meeting. Clay Waller was already facing murder charges for allegedly killing Jaque.
He is already in jail for harassing Jacque's sister.