A Northlander who stabbed her partner to death using a boning knife during an argument has been sentenced to three years' imprisonment.

Julieta Hurenga Beattie, 47, earlier pleaded guilty to one charge of manslaughter and today appeared for sentencing in the High Court at Whangārei.

She killed Richard Kire Bristow in the kitchen of his Moerewa home on September 16, last year.

Justice Paul Davison declined to impose a minimum period of imprisonment sought by the Crown.

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Beattie, a mother of five, and Bristow began arguing on their way back from a social event and despite her relatives trying to de-escalate the situation, she fetched a knife and stabbed him in the chest.

Bristow died in his home after the knife penetrated 16cm into his chest.