SHAKOPEE (AP) -- A man who admitted strangling his wife at a Minnesota campground nearly two years ago said he was only trying to quiet her during an argument.
Jeffrey L. Thompson, 39, pleaded guilty in a Scott County court Monday to second-degree intentional murder in the death of his wife, Ruma, 23. District Judge Thomas Howe immediately sentenced him to 29 years in prison, following state guidelines.
Thompson said his wife had threatened to take the couple's 11-month-old son and return to her native Bangladesh, and became enraged as the couple argued at the campground near Jordan in May 2000.
Thompson, who is 6 feet 1 and 210 pounds, said he pinned Ruma Thompson to the floor of their bedroom and put his arm across her neck to quiet her. Ruma Thompson was a foot shorter than her husband.
"I didn't think I held her long enough for her to choke. I never intended to kill somebody," Thompson said Monday, wiping his eyes. "I did try to revive her."
County attorney Tom Harbinson pressed Thompson, asking whether he knew that cutting off his wife's air flow would kill her.
"I knew that, when I released my grip on her, yes," Thompson answered.
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