Hibbing man pleads guilty to death of girlfriend

Hibbing man charged with murder after girlfriend's death
Hibbing man charged with murder after girlfriend's death(Hibbing Police)
Published: Aug. 7, 2023 at 4:05 PM CDT
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HIBBING, MN. (Northern News Now) - A Hibbing man charged with killing his girlfriend has pleaded guilty.

Eric James Jarvis, 47, pleaded guilty on Monday to first-degree manslaughter for the death of Kari Jo Petrich, 44.

According to the criminal complaint, on June 26, 2022, Hibbing Police responded to the apartment Jarvis shared with Petrich twice.

Both times, officials say the couple was arguing and seemed intoxicated.

Jarvis was asking police to take Petrich to detox and denied that they were fighting.

Court documents say on the second visit on June 26, police talked to Petrich, who told officers Jarvis had hit her on the head and that she was bleeding.

Officers said they didn’t see any injuries on Petrich. They asked Jarvis what he wanted since he was the one who called 911. He said he didn’t want anything so the officers left.

Police then responded to the apartment for a third time at approximately 12:55 a.m. on June 28 to find Petrich’s body with severe bruising on her face, blood on the carpet, and a glass shard by her head.

Officers asked Jarvis if he hurt Petrich. At first, he said he didn’t know, but then said “We probably fought.”

When officers informed Jarvis that Petrich was dead, he put out his hands to be arrested.

Jarvis told officers it was possible Petrich had died on the night of June 26, a full day before he called police.

A medical examiner’s initial report indicated Petrich died of blunt head trauma, adding that with timely medical intervention, her death could have been avoided.

According to the St. Louis County Attorney’s Office, Jarvis will be sentenced to the top of the presumed sentencing range under the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines.

Due to Jarvis’ criminal history, he is expected to serve over eight years in prison for the incident.

In a statement, the St. Louis County Attorney’s Office extended its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Kari Jo Petrich and hopes this resolution will provide them with some amount of closure in the tragic loss of their loved one.

Jarvis is scheduled to be sentenced on September 14.

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