Murder charge: St. Paul man beat wife, drew heart on note left near her body

A 65-year-old St. Paul man fatally beat his wife in their home and drew a heart on a note left near her body that professed his love, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday.

Arvid H. Johnson was charged in Ramsey County District Court with second-degree unintentional murder in connection with the death of his wife over the weekend in their home in the 1400 block of N. Dale Street.

Johnson was arrested at the scene and remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail ahead of a court appearance Tuesday. Court records do not list an attorney for him.

Investigators found a bloodied wooden bat in the bedroom about 5 feet from his wife’s body, the complaint read. Also in the bedroom was a paper towel that had a heart drawn on it and the words, “I didn’t mean to hurt my wife. I love my wife.”

“I just couldn’t stop,” he told police, according to the complaint. He believes he also he hit her once with a baseball bat, the charging document read.

Authorities have yet to release the woman’s identity.

According to the complaint:

A caller to 911 about 3:30 a.m. Sunday said that her father admitted to killing his wife. Officers arrived at the home and saw Johnson sitting at the kitchen table smoking a cigarette.

The officers located Johnson’s wife on a bedroom floor with a comforter wrapped around her body. There were numerous injuries to her face and head. Johnson told police that he hit his wife with his hands.

“I do everything for her,” the complaint quoted Johnson as saying. “I take care of her, she has arthritis. I get her food. It’s never good enough. She is just so mean.”

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