Submitted by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office
Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announced 38-year-old Yuriy Bruks of Cheektowaga pleaded guilty this morning before Erie County Court Judge James Bargnesi to one count of manslaughter in the first degree (class “B” violent felony).
On Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, at approximately 3:40 a.m., police and paramedics responded to a home on Raymond Avenue in the Town of Cheektowaga after receiving a 911 call where they found the victim, 34-year-old Tetiana Bruks, deceased inside of a bathroom.
The Erie County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the victim’s death as a homicide caused by blunt force trauma to her head, neck and torso. The investigation determined that the defendant caused the death of his wife by beating her repeatedly.
As police investigated the homicide, the defendant fled the area. Two months later, U.S. Marshals Service arrested Bruks after he illegally crossed into Mexico. When he was taken into custody, the defendant was found in possession of a one-way plane ticket from Mexico City to Istanbul, Turkey.
Bruks faces a maximum of 25 years in prison when he is sentenced on Friday, June 9. He continues to be held without bail.
Flynn said, “The family of Tetiana Bruks has waited a long time for justice. Today, I am pleased to announce that this defendant pleaded guilty. My office will continue to hold abusers accountable. I encourage anyone who feels unsafe at home to contact the BE SAFE domestic violence victim advocacy program. My office and other community resources are available to help.”
Flynn commended Det. Terry Griffin of the Cheektowaga Police Department for his work in this investigation. Flynn also commended the U.S. Marshals Service fugitive task force for locating and apprehending the defendant.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Ryan D. Haggerty of the homicide bureau.
The BE SAFE domestic violence victim advocacy program specializes in advocacy within the criminal courts. Our victim advocates are available to provide trauma-informed support and resources to anyone impacted by domestic violence. While the program primarily works with victims who are navigating the criminal justice process and rebuilding their lives following the arrest of the offender, you do not need to have a pending criminal case to speak with an advocate and access services.
For more information on the BE SAFE domestic violence victim advocacy program, call 716-858-4630 or visit www.erie.gov/besafe.