MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A northern Minnesota man pleaded guilty Tuesday to murdering a woman in 2019 on the Red Lake Indian Reservation.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office District of Minnesota said that 24-year-old William Jones IV, of Ponemah, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the Nov. 6, 2019, assault on his girlfriend who later died from her injuries.

According to prosecutors, Jones beat the victim in their home, hitting her on the shoulders, arms and torso. After the assault, the victim fell and struck her head. Jones did not call for help, even though the victim was unconscious for two days inside the home.

“This defendant not only perpetrated an extremely violent assault on his victim, he showed complete disregard for human life when he failed to seek medical aid,” said Acting U.S. Attorney W. Anders Folk, in a statement. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to prosecuting those who commit horrific acts of domestic violence such as this, which disproportionately plague Native American women.”

When the victim’s mother saw her daughter’s condition, she phoned authorities, and emergency crews brought the victim to a Fargo hospital. Doctors determined that the victim suffered a traumatic brain injury and was in a persistent vegetative state. The victim died later that month.

A sentencing date for Jones has yet to be set.

Domestic Violence Resources

For anonymous, confidential help, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224.

People can also call the Women’s Advocates Crisis Hotline at 651-227-8284. Video chat is available here.