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Father of victim speaks after alleged murder in Brigham City

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Posted at 5:56 PM, Apr 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-17 00:00:50-04

BRIGHAM CITY, Utah – Police in Brigham City said they had never dealt with any domestic violence calls regarding a young couple until Wednesday, when a man called 911 and told authorities he had murdered his wife.

Spencer Gerlach, 20, and Keltsie Gerlach, 19, were recently divorced, and after police found Keltsie stabbed to death Wednesday her father spoke to FOX 13 News.

Keltsie Gerlach. Image courtesy Facebook.

Keltsie Gerlach. Image courtesy Facebook.

"We loved our daughter very much, and the whole family is saddened by the tragic loss," said Sheldon Mansfield, Keltsie’s father.

Wednesday, Keltsie's ex-husband, Spencer Gerlach, called 911 and admitted to stabbing the 19-year-old to death. When police arrived around 12:30 p.m., Keltsie's body was on the living room floor. Police also found the couple’s 15-month-old daughter unharmed and sleeping in a crib in the residence.

Police said Gerlach opened the door for officers and was compliant throughout questioning and his arrest.

"Just very nonchalant at the time, there was really no emotion right at that moment; he said very little," said Chief Michael Nelsen of the Brigham City Police Department.

The Utah Division of Child and Family Services took the baby into custody, and she was eventually placed with a grandparent for the night.

"Very tragic, very tragic for both families," Nelsen said of the situation.

Keltsie worked at the Brigham City UPS Store with her mother, and her father lives in her hometown of Grace, Idaho.

"[The baby] is with all of the family right now," Mansfield said.

The grandparents got together Thursday to discuss custody.

Spencer Gerlach is now in the Box Elder County Jail on first-degree murder charge. Police said he had no previous record of domestic violence.

"Never a call of even a verbal argument or family fight type," Nelsen said. "...Nope, no priors at all."