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Woman pleads guilty in stabbing death of boyfriend

By Shavonne Potts
spotts@salisburypost.com
SALISBURY — A Kannapolis woman charged in 2009 with killing her teenage boyfriend after an argument could spend nearly 20 years in prison after pleading guilty in court this morning.
Emily Ann Howard, now 28, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the Sept. 24, 2009, stabbing death of 17-year-old Dustin Garren Lee.
She received a sentence of 15 years to just more than 18 and a half years in prison.
Howard had been charged with first-degree murder. But she said in court statements that she stabbed Lee to protect her father, William Howard, who’d gotten into an argument with Lee that turned physical.
The incident began when, according to Emily Howard, Lee began choking her. When she woke her father sometime around 1 a.m., he asked Lee to leave.
Instead, Emily Howard said, Lee began pushing her father around. Trying to defend him, she stabbed Lee with a kitchen knife.
“I think Dustin walked into it,” Emily Howard said in her statement.
Lee was stabbed once in the chest with a 10-inch knife. He was found lying on the ground outside the home they all shared.
“I wasn’t trying to hurt Dustin. I just wanted him to leave,” Emily Howard said in her statement to investigators.
See Thursday’s Post for more details.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.

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