MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 38-year-old man was sentenced Friday to 47 years in prison after pleading guilty to killing an Eagan couple with his minivan in a hit-and-run last June.
Jonna Armartey pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree murder after intentionally striking 74-year-old Roger Peterson and 58-year-old Diane Peterson as they took their nightly walk.
According to the criminal complaint, police found the couple in the parking lot of a strip mall with blunt force trauma, struggling to breathe. Both were later pronounced dead at the hospital.
Witnesses told police that a silver van struck the couple and fled the scene, the complaint states. Surveillance video showed the vehicle following the Petersons as they walked through the parking lot.
Shortly after the hit-and-run, another witness called 911, saying he found the van at a restaurant less than a mile away.
When officers walked up to the van, they found the windshield cracked and damage to the vehicle’s front end. Also, one of the victims’ cell phones was wedged under the passenger side windshield wiper.
In an interview with police, Armartey said the Petersons “freaked him out” and so he ran them over. He told officers he was going fast and “hit them hard”.
Armartey did not know them personally.