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Pontiac man accused of beating wife to death charged with murder

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Posted at 3:26 PM, Feb 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-03 15:58:06-05

The Oakland County Sheriff's Office says a Pontiac man has been charged with open murder after his wife was found beaten to death last month.

According to police, Patrick Lee Johnson was arraigned in 50th District Court on Friday.

His wife, Karen Johnson, 56, died on Jan. 31 after a domestic dispute at their home earlier that month.

Deputies were called to the home on Jan. 18 after Patrick allegedly hit Karen in the head with a hammer. When they arrived, they found Patrick outside and Karen upstairs, unresponsive in a bedroom.

According to the sheriff's office, Patrick said he and his wife were getting a divorce and she wanted money to move. He told deputies he didn't want to give her money and they argued, so he hit her in the head multiple times with a hammer.

Karen was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but later died from her injuries.

Patrick has a history of domestic violence issues, including one in 2004 and 2007 in Lansing.