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Dakota man charged with killing his wife

Joseph Wright

DAKOTA, Minn. (FOX47) -- A Dakota man was charged with 2nd degree murder of his wife on July 10.

According to the criminal complaint, a call came into Winona County emergency dispatch. The caller reportedly said he was Joseph Bailly Wright, 79, of Dakota. He reportedly gave his address and told dispatch that he killed his wife. The criminal complaint said when asked why he killed her, he said, "too many problems" and hung up.

The complaint said when authorities arrived at the address, they spoke with the landlord who told them Wright and his wife lived on the lower level. The landlord told police the wife had dementia.

According to the criminal complaint, dispatch personnel spoke with Wright again. He told them he tried to commit suicide by slitting his wrists. Wright then reportedly told dispatch his wife was dead in the living room, and then told dispatch he killed his wife with a knife. The criminal complaint said he said he stabbed her in the abdominal area two times. When dispatch asked Wright if he was sure his wife wasn't breathing, he reportedly said something that sounded like “she’s not. She better not be”.

Law enforcement made entry into the home to see if emergency medical aid could be administered to the victim. Authorities said she was located inside on a chair with at least one apparent stab wound to her abdomen. Law enforcement also saw blunt force trauma to the victim's face.

Medical personnel determined the wife was deceased.

In plain view inside the residence, an officer reported seeing an apparent suicide note with statements indicating the writer could not take it anymore, the writer could not watch her suffer and the writer tried to kill himself.

According to the criminal complaint, law enforcement saw two knives with blood on and them, and a large pool of blood.

Wright was taken via ambulance to a Wisconsin hospital for medical care for the cuts to his wrist.

If convicted, Wright faces up to 40 years in prison.

Megan Zemple

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