Green Bay man gets 2 consecutive life terms in fatal stabbings of 2 women found dead in home

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin man convicted in the fatal stabbings of two women found dead in a home last year has been sentenced to two consecutive life terms without any chance for parole.

Brown County Circuit Court Judge Beau Liegeois also ordered Richard Sotka, 49, on Monday to pay more than $16,000 in restitution.

A jury convicted the Green Bay man in March of two counts of first-degree intentional homicide and other charges in the killings of Rhonda Cegelski, 58, of Green Bay, and Paula O’Connor, 53, of Bellevue.

Cegelski, who was Sotka’s girlfriend, and O’Connor were found stabbed to death in a Green Bay home in January 2023. According to a criminal complaint, Sotka told officers he “snapped” and killed the women after they laughed at him and he felt “humiliated.”

Sotka, who plans to appeal his convictions, has claimed he killed the women in self-defense. He told the court Monday that while everyone wants him “to show remorse. I feel nothing.”

Liegeois noted Sotka’s inability to show remorse, and said his negative comments about Cegelski after killing her is “classic domestic abuser talk.”

“This is somebody who was a daughter, a sister, a friend, a mother and a grandmother even, who you basically just wiped off the face of the earth because you felt a little bit insulted,” the judge said

After killing the two women, Sotka drove to Arkansas, where he was arrested the same day their bodies were found.