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District man charged with fatally stabbing wife during argument over cable bill

A man charged with fatally stabbing his wife in a Northeast Washington apartment had been arguing with her over an unpaid cable bill, which led to a violent confrontation, according to court papers filed in D.C. Superior Court on Monday.

A friend found the body of Claudia Hall, 51, on Friday lying on her bed in her residence in the 300 block of 18th Place NE. Police said she had been stabbed in the abdomen and choked, and was pronounced dead at the scene. It was the District’s first homicide of 2014.

The day before, police officers had found Hall’s husband, Alphonso Cleveland, 52, lying face down on a street in Northwest Washington, according to court documents. He had been taken to a hospital to be treated for hypothermia, where police said they interviewed him and later charged him with second-degree murder while armed.

According to court documents, Cleveland told police that the argument over the unpaid bill occurred Christmas Eve and that Hall had ordered her husband to leave. He returned Wednesday or Thursday, police said, and court documents say a physical confrontation occurred.

The suspect told police that his wife pulled his glasses off and that he pushed her to the floor, according to the documents. He told police that she grabbed the knife, but that he got it away from her and stabbed her, the court papers say. The documents say the suspect told police that he put his wife on her bed, hugged and kissed her and left.

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