When their neighbour died, his cat moved in with a 56-year-old woman from Buryatia and her husband.
Killed husband, protecting her cat: woman in Buryatia faces up to 15 years in jail. File picture, The Siberian Times
She adored the animal but he did his best to scare the pet away. The cat became the subject of fierce arguments between the couple, whose names have not been revealed.
'He tried to get rid of the animal and kept beating it,' according to one account.
On 10 February the couple had a romantic dinner involving some liquor after which the cat appeared in their home on a livestock farm in Zakamenskiy district. The husband grabbed a rake and tried to kill the cat, according to the police.
'To protect the animal, the woman seized the rake from his hands, and then snatched a knife from the table in a fit of rage, and stabbed the man three times in the chest,' said a spokesman for the Investigative Committee.
He died instantly. The wife is detained and facing a psychiatric examination.
If convicted of murder, she faces up to 15 years in jail.
If she is judged to acted 'in the heat of passion', the charge could be reduced to manslaughter, with her receiving a milder sentence.
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