A 54-year-old Kent man on Monday pleaded not guilty to a first-degree murder charge for allegedly stabbing his wife multiple times in front of their son at their family home and driveway on Aug. 23.
Aregay G. Tesfamariam, accompanied by his attorney, John Ewers, was arraigned at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. A trial date has not yet been set, but a case setting hearing is scheduled for Sept. 21 at the RJC, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
Tesfamariam remains in custody in the county jail in Seattle with bail set at $1 million.
Kent Police arrested Tesfamariam for investigation of murder as he walked away from the house in the 9500 block of South 207th Place on that Wednesday afternoon, carrying a knife and with blood on his clothing. He dropped the knife as officers surrounded him.
Tringo Ferede-Tesema, 51, of Kent, died from multiple stab wounds, according to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office. Paramedics treated Ferede-Tesema in the driveway before transporting her to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where she later died.
“The defendant has been planning the murder of his wife for some time,” according to the charging documents filed by Wyman Yip, senior deputy prosecuting attorney. “On this day, without provocation, he armed himself with two knives and laid in wait for her, even devising a plan to get her closer to him when the time came.
“His vicious attack on her was both brutal and prolonged – stabbing her repeatedly, even as she tried to get away. Additionally, the defendant was shockingly brazen, repeatedly stabbing his wife in front of their (adult) son and out in the driveway for all to see, including the passing mailman.”
King County Superior Court issued a domestic violence order for protection in 2004 for Ferede-Tesema after she explained Tesfamariam had threatened her with a knife and often tells her he will kill her, according to court documents. The protection order was only good for one year.
The couple’s adult son lives at his parents’ home and told police he was in the upstairs portion of the home when he heard his mother screaming. He ran to the kitchen to find his father standing over his mother with a knife in his hand. The son then saw his father stab his mother with the kitchen knife.
The son tried to intervene, striking his father with a glass vase and trying to grab the knife from him. In doing so, the son suffered a cut hand. His mother got up and ran out the front door with his father chasing her. The son watched his father stab his mother again before she fell in the driveway.