Woman guilty of pushing husband off cliff appeals

AP News
Posted: Oct 24, 2014 11:47 AM

KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — A Montana woman is appealing her conviction for killing her husband of eight days by pushing him off a cliff in Glacier National Park last year.

Jordan Graham's attorneys argue in an appeal filed with 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that prosecutors distorted and withheld evidence to convince jurors that Graham planned to kill Cody Lee Johnson on July 7, 2013.

Graham pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, which doesn't involve premeditation, just before closing arguments in her December 2013 trial. A judge rejected her motion to withdraw her guilty plea after she argued the government's request for a life sentence was an attempt to punish her for first-degree murder.

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Graham was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

The appeal, filed Oct. 17, requests the conviction be reversed and Graham be tried for manslaughter.