Where is Thomas Gotthard Now? Danish Priest Explained

By Kieran Burt
Published: October 25, 2023 (Last updated: October 31, 2023)
Thomas Gotthard, Danish Priest who killed Maria from Jakobsen
Image via New York Post

Maria from Jakobsen was a woman who lived in the town of Frederikssund, Denmark with her husband Thomas Gotthard, a former priest from the local parish church, and their two children. But towards the end of 2020, this family was torn apart when Gotthard killed Maria to end their marriage.

The town residents would have been understandably shocked that a man sworn to God would turn to murder. To cover up his crime, Gotthard reportedly took inspiration from Breaking Bad to hide the body and the act, but he was still caught and put in jail. At the end of his trial in August 2021, Thomas Gotthard received a 15-year jail sentence. He will now serve the time he has been sentenced to in prison, and by the time he gets out of jail, he will be nearly 60 years old.

The Murder of Maria from Jakobsen

Maria From Jakobsen, 43, was the wife of Lutheran priest Thomas Gotthard, 44, until he killed her. Maria disappeared in late October 2020. After Maria’s sister reported that she was missing, Gotthard told investigators that she had left their home in Frederikssund while depressed, and left her phone, credit cards, and computer.

Three weeks later, however, Gotthard was arrested and suspended from his role as the local parish priest. He was charged with the murder of Maria in April 2021, as investigators found hydrochloric acid and caustic soda as well as a search history full of terms like “sea depth,” “oil barrels,” “suicide” and “cleaning.”

As reported by The Copenhagen Post, in a court hearing, Gotthard admitted to killing his wife, saying “I killed Maria.”

He continued by saying, “I ended her life; she did not deserve that fate. I am guilty of having lied and deceived you all. I’ve been a total thug. I have sent my life out into the darkness where I want to stay. No one should feel sorry for me.”

In August, Gotthard was convicted of her murder and sentenced to 15 years in jail.

Maria from Jakobsen, who was murdered by her husband Thomas Gotthard

Maria from Jakobsen | via B.T.

Why did Thomas Gotthard kill Maria?

Gotthard killed Maria because the pair were undergoing marital strife behind closed doors. The pair’s relationship had broken down because Gotthard had started a relationship with another woman he was “wildly in love with.”

Gotthard explained that he didn’t want to divorce her because it would have caused problems for his two children and ex-wife. He killed his wife by hitting the back of her head with a stone.

Was the murder inspired by Breaking Bad?

While Gotthard’s murder of his wife wasn’t inspired by the popular TV show Breaking Bad, the way that he tried to dispose of her body was. After he had killed his wife, he attempted to dissolve the body using hydrochloric acid and caustic soda. He dropped her body in a 54-gallon feed barrel and moved it to an abandoned country estate.

Thomas Gotthard disposing of evidence in the murder of Maria from Jakobsen

Thomas Gotthard disposes of a sack wagon and a feed barrel | via Lokalavisen

In the second episode of Breaking Bad, titled “Cat’s in the Bag”, Walter White and Jesse Pinkman knock out Krazy-8, despite attempting to kill him with phosphine gas. To get rid of the body, Walter decides that they should use hydrofluoric acid to get rid of the body. This worked well, but too well, as it also dissolved the ceramic and metal in the bathtub, causing it to crash through the floor.

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