Accused killer Chinnawat Vue testified Wednesday that an affair between his 22-year-old wife Xia Vang and a wealthy, married man is what drove him to stab her more than 100 times.

Testifying through a Hmong interpreter, Vue, 31, said the affair tore him apart and collapsed their six-year marriage.

There’s no disputing on either side of the courtroom whether Vue killed his wife, whom he married in 2009 when she was still a minor.

Vue is charged with first degree murder and could spend the rest of his life in prison. His defense hopes to convince jurors to find him guilty on a lesser charge, like second-degree murder.

Prosecutor Elana Smith has introduced witnesses who testified Vang was abused by her husband, saying she desperately wanted out of their marriage, but was being pressured to stay by family elders.

On Wednesday the defendant took that stand to give his version of the events leading up to the brutal slaying.

Vue testified he tried for months to stop his wife from continuing the affair, but to no avail. The defendant said he turned to elders in the Hmong community, in an attempt to help him mend the broken marriage. But as many times as Vang seemed to want to reconcile, Vue testified, his wife still continued the relationship outside of their marriage.

The tension between the couple reached its breaking point on March 8, 2016 when Vue says he confronted his wife once again about the other man, asking whether she was still spending time with him. His mother-in-law told him she saw the other man pick her up the day before, Vue testified.

Vue checked her phone for any text messages, but there were none.

It was about 11 p.m. and Vue, who was working two jobs, said he was supposed to report to his night shift job at a manufacturing plant in an hour. But he told a relative to let his boss know he wasn’t going to make it.

Instead, Vue testified he continued to press Vang while they were in their bedroom about where she was that day. One of their three children, a 3-year-old boy, was in the room at the time.

“She said it was late and she wanted to go to sleep and after that she turned off the light, I turned it back on and I asked her why she keeps doing this to me and to our children,” Vue testified. “If she wanted to go she should be gone completely and not come back.”

Vue testified he felt tremendously sad and was crying, unable to understand why his marriage was falling apart. He testified that he left the bedroom of their northeast Fresno home and went to the kitchen to get a class of water. On the counter was a kitchen knife that he picked up and brought into the room.

He testified to his defense attorney Phillip Billington that he was going to scare her with it. When she saw the weapon, she asked, “What are you doing with that knife?’”

Vue testified. “I said’ I can kill you and then kill myself,’” Vue testified. “She said I ‘couldn’t do that, you love me too much, you couldn’t do that to me.’”

She left the room several times to check her phone. Vue believed she was calling her boyfriend to come pick her up.

After she returned, Vue said, he tried to keep her in the room by grabbing her around the waist. She shouted at him that he wasn’t her husband anymore. She tried to hit him in his crotch, but he grabbed her by the neck and they fell onto the bed.

“The knife was in my right hand and I was so emotionally distraught, frustrated and angry,” Vue testified. “I held the knife, said ‘I am sorry, I love you very much’ and then I took the knife and stabbed her.”

Vue testified that Vang tried to block his hand, but he continued to stab her repeatedly. The coroner’s report said she was stabbed 101 times.

Overwhelmed with emotion, Vue testified he then tried to kill himself, but he couldn’t find the knife, so he went back to kitchen to get another knife. He returned to the bedroom.

“I kissed her on her forehead twice and I also kissed her on the mouth, then I cut myself and laid down next to her, “ Vue testified.

Vue testified that he slashed his throat twice, but he did not die. He woke up at about 5 a.m. and realized he had failed. He then went to the garage to try and hang himself, but he also unsuccessful.

Vue testified that he called his mother-in-law and his brother to tell them what he had done. He was arrested later that day near Hume Lake.

If convicted, Vue faces up to 26-years-to-life in prison. The trial continues Thursday in Dept. 72.

This story was originally published January 5, 2023 5:30 AM.

Read this original story at the Fresno Bee

Want to share your story? Email your story to [email protected]. You can remain anonymous.

Please report any errors and typos by emailing [email protected]

2 thoughts on “‘I took the knife and stabbed her.’ Wife’s affair drove Fresno man to kill, he testifies”

Leave a Reply