Hennepin County jury finds man guilty of killing wife in 2022

A Hennepin County jury found a man guilty on multiple counts related to the death of his wife in 2022.

47-year-old James Nyonteh was found guilty by a jury of two counts of first-degree murder, one charge of second-degree murder, one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, and aggravating factors related to the second-degree murder and criminal sexual conduct charges.

Nyonteh was charged in the death of his wife, 35-year-old Peachu Yates. Champlin police said that she was found by officers lying in the front yard, unresponsive and bleeding from apparent cuts on the night of Mar. 28, 2022.

Court charging documents say that a girl was standing next to Yates in the yard screaming, “he killed her,” at the scene.

Nyonteh was later arrested in Fargo, North Dakota.

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Nyonteh was initially charged with second-degree intentional murder and later indicted on first-degree charges by a grand jury.

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Sentencing is set for Jan. 3, 2024, and Nyonteh faces a mandatory life sentence without release for the premeditated murder conviction.

Following the jury convictions, Hennepin County Attorney Mary Moriarty released this statement about the case:

“This was a horrific case of intimate partner and sexual violence. Mr. Nyonteh is a serious threat to public safety but the public will now be safe from him. We are grateful to the jury for their time on this case and I hope these verdicts help both the surviving victim and all who were impacted by these crimes on the path to healing.”