Suspect's wife sustained "permanent damage" after being stabbed in the eyes, authorities say.
A St. Paul man who suspected his wife of infidelity pleaded guilty on Friday to fatally stabbing a man whom he believed to be his wife's lover.
Pah Ber, 49, also admitted to stabbing his wife in the eyes, causing permanent damage, during the rampage last fall in the couple's North End area apartment.
The attacks occurred about 6 a.m. on Nov. 19 after Ber returned home from a night of drinking and playing cards, and found his son's friend, Po Lye, 40, of Albert Lea, in the family's living room, the charges say. He stabbed Lye in the stomach, and then slashed his throat, killing him.
Ber then stabbed his wife.
According to the charges, Ber told police that Lye had suggested previously that the couple and Lye sleep together. But Ber's wife, Paw Pree, now 41, told police that Lye had denied wanting to be with her. She said Lye, who had asked the couple's son if he could sleep over that night, told Ber that he just wanted to get some rest and then would leave.
At the time of the attack, Pree was said to have been blinded in both eyes.
On Friday, a spokesperson for the Ramsey County attorney's office said that Pree since has shown "some improvement" in her eyesight. But she did suffer permanent damage, the spokesperson added.
Ber and Pree have five children, according to the charges, which also quote Ber as saying that he had been teased by refugees from Burma about his wife allegedly being unfaithful.
County Attorney John Choi said: "Too often domestic violence leads to homicide. In this case, we have one man losing his life, and a wife and mother injured at the hands of the defendant. Today's plea allows for some healing to begin and spares the family the stress of a jury trial."
Ber pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree assault.
District Judge Elena Ostby set sentencing for Aug. 31.
Anthony Lonetree • 612-875-0041