A Centereach man was sentenced Wednesday to 18 ½ years in prison for killing his 31-year-old wife and dumping her body in the woods near the couple’s home more than six years ago.

Joseph Jones had pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter at Suffolk County court last month. A charge of second-degree murder that he was also facing was dropped in exchange for his plea.

Authorities have said the 34-year-old man killed Nicole Tessa during an argument over missing Oxycodone pills in their Prince Street home in North Patchogue on Dec. 17, 2010. The victim was reported missing two days later and found in a shallow grave in the woods days later.

Jones was arrested after a grand jury indicted him in the case last year, when he was ordered held without bail. Judge John Toomey also sentenced him to five years of post-release supervision.

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Timothy Bolger is the Editor in Chief of the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.