Jordan Linn Graham, the woman at the center of the court case involving the death of her husband of eight days, Cody Johnson, pleaded not guilty to the following charges: first-degree murder, second-degree murder, and providing false information to authorities. The jury for this tragic case involving the Montana couple has been selected. Eight men and six women will hear the evidence. Twenty-five-year-old Johnson fell to his death on July 7, 2013, while visiting Glacier National Park. Twenty-two-year-old Graham has admitted that there were lingering reservations about marrying too young, and sent a text to a friend saying that she planned to speak with Johnson about these doubts.
On July 16, FBI investigator Stacey Smiedala questioned Graham about the incident. No lawyers were present during the interview, an arrangement in which Graham agreed. Graham admitted to Smiedala that there had been an argument on a walking trail located along a cliff inside Glacier National Park shortly before Johnson fell. Graham claims that Johnson fell because he grabbed onto her arm where her automatic and instinctual response was to push him away. Graham explained to Smiedala, “I think I didn’t realize that one push would mean for sure you were over.”
U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy ordered the prosecution not to discuss with the jurors previous allegations against Graham in which she was accused of threatening to murder her parents. According to the order, Molloy wrote that the government had “failed to demonstrate a similarity between the alleged past and present conduct.”
Prosecutors planned to use DNA evidence from a black cloth found at the crime scene that allegedly contains hair strands from Johnson; however, Judge Molloy will not allow the prosecution to use this information during the opening argument. Molloy directly ordered that the prosecution not “imply, suggest or otherwise make reference to DNA evidence, hair examination or laboratory reports in its opening statement.”
[Image Via NDN]