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$350K bond for Kenosha man charged with choking girlfriend to death

KENOSHA, WI (WTAQ) - A $350,000 bond has been set for a Kenosha man charged with choking his girlfriend to death, and leaving her body in a car trunk in Chicago. 

40-year-old Matthew McDowell appeared in Kenosha County Circuit Court this afternoon on charges of first-degree intentional homicide and hiding a corpse.  

Kenosha Police arrested him yesterday, after 30-year-old Erin Ziemendorf of West Allis was found dead in a car parked at a bus station near Chicago's downtown Loop. 

According to prosecutors, McDowell went to police on Sunday, after claiming that his girlfriend accidentally died while they argued. 

Officials said the spat was about money, their relationship, and an impending trip to Hawaii.  The criminal complaint said Ziemendorf swung a corkscrew at McDowell -- and he choked her. 

After realizing she was dead, prosecutors said McDowell panicked, placed the body in a large duffle bag, and drove it to Chicago where he left her. 

McDowell is due back in court a week from today, when a judge will decide if there's enough evidence to order a trial.

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