Crime & Courts

Man charged with murder in death of woman on St. Paul Island

A St. Paul Island man was charged with second-degree murder in the death last week of a 37-year-old woman, court documents say.

Police on the Bering Sea island were alerted to a medical call just before 8:20 a.m. Wednesday, according to charges filed by prosecutors. When an officer arrived, she found Nadesda Rukovishnikoff unresponsive on a bed with 52-year-old Joshua Rukovishnikoff nearby, the charges said.

A second officer and clinic staff arrived and tried to revive Nadesda Rukovishnikoff using a defibrillator and CPR, but she was pronounced dead at the scene, the charges said. Joshua Rukovishnikoff waited in the living room with their 2-year-old son, the charges said.

Joshua Rukovishnikoff told an officer he and Nadesda Rukovishnikoff had been fighting for days and the fight became physical that morning, the charges said. Eventually he put her in a chokehold until she stopped moving, according to the charges. He later told the officer “it was an accident,” the charges said.

Joshua Rukovishnikoff was charged with second-degree murder, criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment.

Tess Williams

Tess Williams is a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News, focusing on breaking news. Before joining the ADN in 2019, she was a reporter for the Grand Forks Herald in North Dakota and previously helped cover the Nebraska Legislature for The Associated Press. Contact her at