Woman charged in strangulation death of St. Paul man in his Como Park apartment

St. Paul Police is investigating a homicide at this apartment complex Sunday. (St. Paul Police Department / FOX 9)

A 37-year-old woman is accused of choking a man to death in his apartment complex in the Como Park neighborhood of St. Paul, Minnesota Sunday. 

Evonne Sharkey of St. Paul was charged Tuesday with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of 65-year-old Steven Malone

According to the charges, Sharkey called police around 5:45 a.m. to report that Malone raped her in his apartment. Officers responded to the Days Inn where she and her family had been staying and took her to Regions Hospital for a sexual assault evaluation. 

She told officers she had been drinking at Malone’s apartment when he raped her. She fought back and was able to “choke him out.” Once he was unconscious, she bound him with tape, gathered her things and fled. She claimed he was breathing when she left. 

Officers went to Malone’s apartment on the 600 block of Front Avenue to try to locate him. They found him in his bedroom lying on his bed covered with a blanket that had been tucked and wrapped tightly around his body. His arms and wrists were bound with a thick cord and duct tape. His ankles were also bound with duct tape and there was a hand towel shoved in his mouth. 

Officers could not find a pulse and he was not breathing. There were no signs of struggle in the apartment. 

Officers spoke to Sharkey’s husband, who told them his wife was a crack addict. He said she left the Days Inn around 2 p.m. on Saturday and later texted him that she was going to party with someone named Ed.

He did not hear from her again until 4 a.m. when he called her to find out where she was. She told him she had been raped and fought with her assailant to get away. He met her at a light rail station. When they got back to the Days Inn, she reported the alleged rape to police. 

Officers spoke to Starkey again. She told officers, “It was an accident. I never meant to hurt that man—that was never my intention.” 

Sharkey said she met Malone the day before at a park near the Days Inn where she had been drinking vodka for a couple hours to get away from her family. Malone came and sat with her and they shared a drink. 

She said Malone invited her back to his apartment for another drink and she agreed to go because she thought he was a nice guy. 

While they were at Malone’s house, another woman came over. The other woman and Sharkey smoked crack together to celebrate the other woman’s birthday. Then, Malone got into an argument with the other woman who then left.  

Sharkey said Malone kept drinking and eventually raped her. The two fought and she choked him by pressing her forearm against his throat until he passed out. He came to as she was gathering up her clothes and drugs and she “choked him out again.” 

While Malone was asleep, Sharkey tied his legs up so she could get her stuff. As she was trying to leave, he came to again, so she choked him out for a third time and left. 

“She said she couldn’t understand how [Malone] died because he was struggling to get out of the tape when she left. She left him covered up with blankets because he was naked.” 

She eventually admitted to putting a towel in his mouth when she was leaving because he was hollering and cussing. She claimed several times that he was alive and breathing when she left. 

The Ramsey County Medical Examiner determined Malone died of asphyxiation due to strangulation. His death was ruled a homicide. 

Sharkey has a prior conviction for third-degree assault in Beltrami County.