West Valley man charged with murder in his wife’s 1995 death

May 24, 2023, 12:21 PM | Updated: 12:22 pm

West Valley City police car...

FILE: (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

(Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — A man is being charged with murder for the death of his wife, who died at their West Valley City Home in 1995.

The Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office filed a first-degree felony charge against Keith Klingenberg Wednesday.

Keith Klingenberg’s wife, Bernadean Klingenberg was found dead in their home on June 11, 1995. She was 44 years old.

A report at the time from Deseret News, said Bernadean Klingenberg was found at 1 p.m. with “extremely recent” stab wounds. According to that article, she had been stabbed five times in the abdomen and her throat had been slashed.

Her husband told police he found her body after coming home from a softball game.

According to a release from the SL County District Attorney’s Office, Keith Klingenberg told a 911 dispatcher that day that Bernadean Klingenberg had taken her own life by slashing her own throat.

The death was considered suspicious, but SL County District Attorney’s Office said at the time, the medical examiner classified the manner of death as undetermined, and it remained an unsolved homicide. 

West Valley City Police and the SL County District Attorney’s Office jointly reactivated the case in 2016. Several factors lead to that decision including statements by Mr. Klingenberg to 911, witness information, and further analysis of the scene by experts.

“Although twenty-eight years is a long time to wait for justice, the Salt Lake County District’s Office will always seek justice for victims. We hope this helps Bernadean’s loved ones begin to find a sense of closure in her death,” SL County District Attorney Sim Gill said. “We’d like to thank our partners at the West Valley City Police Department for helping ensure we have the necessary evidence and information to prosecute this case.”

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West Valley man charged with murder in his wife’s 1995 death