A 55-year-old man has pleaded guilty to fatally choking his girlfriend's brother in her New Brighton home, not stopping until police arrived at the scene.
Steven M. Abrams admitted on Friday in Ramsey County District Court to second-degree murder in the April 14 death of 58-year-old victim, Carlton L. Campbell, of Minneapolis.
Under the plea agreement, Abrams will receive a sentence of 20 to 22½ years, with the first 13 to 15 years served in prison and the balance on supervised release. He remains in custody, with sentencing scheduled for Nov. 15.
"Mr. Abrams is an older guy," defense attorney Thomas Handley said Monday. "If he went to trial and was convicted, there's a chance he'd never get out [before dying]."
The woman told police that Abrams was her domestic partner and she had kicked him out of her home in the 1400 block of 20th Avenue NW. earlier that day. Abrams returned that night, Campbell let him in and Abrams assaulted the woman. The brother intervened and called 911.
Abrams threw Campbell around the apartment and got on top of him on the floor, choking him with both hands. It wasn't until officers were at the door that Abrams, who appeared intoxicated, backed off.
Abrams has a long and sometimes violent criminal history in Minnesota. He's been convicted of assault, theft, drunken driving and disorderly conduct.
Handley said his client "does feel really bad what happened. These guys were friends. He wishes it hadn't happened."