Eden Prairie man charged with murder in stabbing death of pregnant wife

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

An Eden Prairie man was charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the stabbing death of his pregnant wife.

Yevgeniy Savenok, 30, was charged in the death of his wife, 23-year-old wife Lyuba Savenok, and the child she was carrying. Doctors performed an emergency caesarian section and the infant survived for several minutes, but then died.

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said that by charging him with first-degree murder, prosecutors will have to go to a grand jury quickly to seek a first-degree murder indictment. Under Minnesota law, if prosecutors are seeking a life in prison sentence, a grand jury must indict the defendant.

"We have to go to the grand jury in 14 days, which we are prepared to do," Freeman told a news conference Tuesday. "This is so bad, so clearcut we have to make a statement and that is what we are doing today."

Savenok came into his home late Saturday morning, grabbed his two young children and put them in his car outside, then went back in the house. He grabbed a kitchen knife and repeatedly stabbed his wife, before fleeing, according to the criminal complaint. Lyuba Savenok's sister was in the house at the time and saw Savenok put his wife in a headlock, take her to the floor and put a knife to her throat. The sister ran outside and called police, who arrived a short time after Savenok drove away.

About 1 p.m. Saturday, Savenok arrived at United Hospital in St. Paul with the children. He told a security guard that he just killed his wife. St. Paul police were called and Savenok was arrested, the complaint states.

Freeman said he was appalled by the violence of the slaying.

"He stabs her so many times," Freeman said. "He stabs her in the chest and the stomach, knowing she was carrying his baby. It passes all understanding how one person can do that to another, especially his own progeny."

Savenok criminal complaint (PDF)