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Florida man accused of strangling his wife of 50 years

Ronald Strouse is charged with first-degree murder in the death of his wife, Susan Strouse.
Credit: Polk County Sheriff's Office
Ronald Strouse is charged with first-degree murder.

LAKE WALES, Fla. — Detectives with the Polk County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Lake Wales man accused of killing his wife of 50 years.

Ronald Strouse, 73, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Susan Strouse, 72.

An autopsy found numerous abrasions and contusions on her arm, neck, and face, consistent with manual strangulation. She also had lacerations to her hand and wrist, and a broken fingernail, consistent with defensive wounds.

"This was a particularly brutal murder," said Sheriff Grady Judd in a news release. "We aren't sure why Ronald Strouse murdered his wife of 50 years, but one thing we are sure of is that he will be held accountable for his actions."

Authorities arrested Ronald Strouse on Tuesday. Deputies booked him into the Polk County jail.

Emergency personnel received a call from Ronald Strouse around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. He told the call taker he had a fight with his wife and she was dead, according to the sheriff's office.

Deputies found Susan Strouse dead in the living room with severe bruising. Ronald Strouse was sitting on the porch of his Harte Drive home when deputies arrived.

An arrest affidavit said Ronald Strouse told deputies his wife wanted to leave him on Monday night. It led to an argument and she would not tell him why she wanted to leave, Ronald Strouse told deputies.

The next day Ronald Strouse confronted his wife again as she was on the couch. The two then began to wrestle on the floor

Ronald Strouse is accused of straddling her midsection as his wife was on her back and then choking her. According to the arrest report, he told deputies he knew choking her could have led to her death.

Ronald Strouse was scheduled to have his first appearance hearing at 1 p.m. Wednesday.

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