Newlywed faces murder charge over husband's cliff plunge
A newlywed wife has been charged with murdering her husband by pushing him off a cliff eight days into their marriage because she was "having second thoughts".
Jordan Linn Graham (22) is alleged to have argued with Cody Lee Johnson (25) as they hiked in Glacier National Park in Montana before shoving him over a precipice.
Shortly before the incident Ms Graham sent a number of text messages to a friend saying that she was having reservations about her marriage, and that she was about to talk to her husband about it.
In one, she said: "Oh well, I'm about to talk to him. But dead serious if you don't hear from me at all again tonight, something happened."
Mr Johnson vanished on July 7 and his widow told police that the last time she saw him he had been heading off for a drive with a friend from their home town of Kalispell, close to the park.
Four days later she reported finding his body below a hiking trail where they used to walk during their engagement.
According to prosecution court documents, park rangers said it seemed unusual that she had found the body in an area so steep and rugged that it had to be recovered by helicopter.
She later admitted lying and told FBI investigators that she had been with her husband on the trail when he died. She said there had been an argument, her husband grabbed her arm, she pushed him and he fell.
According to an FBI affidavit: "Graham stated she could have just walked away, but due to anger, she pushed Johnson with both hands in the back and as a result, he fell face first off the cliff."
Ms Graham made an initial appearance in court on Monday on a charge of second-degree murder. The couple had been together two years and Mr Johnson had proposed in December.
A friend of Mr Johnson's family told 'The Missoulian' newspaper in Montana that "nobody is shocked at all" that his widow was suspected of murder.
The family friend, Tracey Maness, added: "She'd been telling people she knew she never wanted to be married, she just wanted to have a wedding, and that's apparently what they were arguing about.
"She kept continuing to lie, she kept changing her story. She showed no grief and she would not speak to Cody's mother.
"He was very in love with Jordan and he was really excited about starting the next chapter of his life."
On social networking websites Ms Graham had changed her name to Jordan Johnson and posted photos of her wedding day and the national park.
A post-mortem examination concluded that he had died from injuries consistent with falling from the cliff. (© Daily Telegraph, London)