A northeast Minneapolis man who fatally stabbed his new wife in the neck was sentenced last week in Hennepin County District Court to a term of 7 ¾ years.

Wayne R. Watson, 52, killed 53-year-old Flowera Ransom on Oct. 1, 2015. He pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter. With credit for time served since his arrest, Watson will spend 4½ years in prison, then serve the balance of his sentence on supervised release.

Before the sentencing, a victim advocate read a statement from Ransom’s brother saying his sister wanted to end her relationship with Watson and move back to Oklahoma.

Watson apologized in court for his actions before sentencing.

On the night of the killing, Watson called 911 to report that he had stabbed his wife in their home in the 2500 block of Central Avenue NE. She was found on the floor of their apartment with a stab wound on her neck.

When interviewed by law enforcement, Watson initially told officers he had stabbed his wife because she came at him with a knife. During a second interview, he claimed that they had struggled over the knife, but that she may have ended up stabbing herself on purpose, the criminal complaint against him read.

Watson has a long history of mostly minor crimes involving trespassing, disorderly conduct and drinking alcohol in public. He also has convictions for assault and drug possession.

Paul Walsh