Husband of MCAD student pleads guilty to her murder

Sentencing of Matthew Gretz set for June 23

WHITTIER — The husband of a Minneapolis College of Art and Design student found dead at their home almost one year ago pleaded guilty Monday in Hennepin County District Court to second-degree intentional murder.

Matthew Gretz, 33, was arrested in September, about 10 weeks after the body of his wife, Kira Simonian, 32, was found in their apartment at 2435 1st Ave. S by an apartment manager on June 28. Simonian apparently was beaten with a hammer and stabbed multiple times, police reported.

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office reported Gretz could serve more than 25 years in prison. His sentencing was set for June 23.

Gretz and Simonian had recently moved to Minneapolis from Chicago so that Simonian could complete a master of fine arts degree at MCAD. She was one year into the two-year program at the time of her death, college officials said.

Prior to his arrest, a tearful Gretz spoke at a vigil for his wife attended by Simonian’s MCAD classmates, neighborhood residents and advocates for the prevention of domestic violence.