Jordan Linn Graham has agreed to plead guilty to second-degree murder for pushing her new husband off a cliff just days after wedding.
The Montana woman accused of pushing her new husband off a cliff in July reached a plea deal with prosecutors Thursday by agreeing to plead guilty to second-degree murder.
In exchange for the guilty plea from Jordan Linn Graham, prosecutors will waive a first-degree murder charge and a charge of lying to law enforcement.
The parties went into the judge’s chambers to negotiate the deal after prosecutors and defense attorneys rested their cases Thursday following an emotional morning in court.
Graham had already admitted to pushing Johnson in Glacier National Park on July 7, but she has claimed his death was an accident caused by an act of self-defense.
The couple had only been married for eight days when Johnson fell to his death. According to court documents filed in the case, Graham told police she went with Johnson to a popular hiking trail and an argument ensued.
“Graham stated their argument intensified. At one point in time during their arguing, Graham turned and began to walk away. She stated Johnson grabbed her by the arm,” reads an affidavit supporting the charges against Graham.
Graham testified during a November 15 pre-trial hearing that “Cody had grabbed me and I thought he was going to push me down. My first instinct was to get him off.”
In a court filing, the defense said Graham pushed Johnson away as she removed his hand from her arm, and her husband tumbled over the cliff.
But the criminal complaint filed against Graham says that in an FBI interview, “Graham stated she could have just walked away, but due to her anger, she pushed Johnson with both hands in the back and as a result, he fell face-first off the cliff.”