Updated 08:31 PM EST, Wed, Dec 08, 2021

New Bride Who Pushed Husband Off Cliff in Montana Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison

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A federal judge sentenced a Montana woman who confessed to pushing her husband face-first off a cliff in Glacier National Park last year to 30 years in prison on Thursday.

Jordan Linn Graham, 22, was apparently having second thoughts about her 8-day-old marriage when she pushed her late husband Cody Lee Johnson, 25, to his death on July 7, 2013. Graham reportedly pushed Johnson off a cliff after the two got into an argument during a hiking trip in Flathead County, Mont. Johnson allegedly grabbed her arm and she responded by removing his hand, then pushing him in the back, causing him to fall of the precipice to his death.

She then lied about his death and told authorities he had driven off with friends, court documents said.

An FBI affidavit states that Graham was having second thoughts about having married Johnson after a two-year courtship. On the night Johnson died, Graham told a friend that she meant to talk with Johnson about "having second thoughts about having been married" and that she wanted to talk to him about it. Just before the couple got into a spat, she texted the friend that she was about to talk to him around 9 p.m.

"But dead serious if u don't hear from me at all again tonight, something happened," Graham wrote, according to the affidavit.

Johnson failed to show up for work the following day and was reported missing. When questioned by authorities, Graham originally told investigators that her husband was simply going for a drive with a friend, and added that she saw him get into a car that had pulled up to their home.

Two days after police questioned Graham, she told a park ranger that she found her husband's body near the park's Loop Trail. Five days later, she reportedly admitted to investigators that the two had an argument that resulted in her pushing Johnson to his death.

She was ordered by U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy to serve 365 months in federal prison, without parole and barred from profiting by revealing additional details about the murder, reports The Missoulian.

The judge added that he not find Graham remorseful over her husband's death and that he never heard her say sorry for the killing.

Prosecutors were pushing to lock Graham up for 50 years to life in prison. However, defense attorneys argued that her offense was an "extremely reckless but unintentional act" that warrants only 10 years behind bars.

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