Husband charged with killing wife by stuffing sock in mouth

MITCHELL, S.D. (AP) — A South Dakota man has been charged with manslaughter in the suffocation of his wife who prosecutors say died after her husband stuffed a sock in her mouth, fastened a belt around her head and went to sleep.

Thirty-nine-year-old James Brinker was charged Thursday in the death of 36-year-old Marie Brinker.

Court documents say Brinker awoke Tuesday to find his wife cold. Prosecutors say he left to pick up their three children, returned and had two sons go inside to call 911. He then left.

Prosecutors say Brinker wrapped his wife in a blanket, but it wasn’t clear how she was otherwise restrained.

The Daily Republic reported Brinker’s past included five arrests for domestic assault.

Brinker’s attorney, Chris Nipe, said he had not seen reports and could not immediately comment.

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Information from: The Daily Republic, http://www.mitchellrepublic.com

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