September 10, 2013

"But dead serious if u don't hear from me at all again tonight, something happened."

Text message sent to a friend by a woman accused of second degree murder, whose husband died in a fall off a cliff in Glacier National Park. Jordan Linn Graham had been married to Cody L. Johnson for about a week.
Graham told police that her husband grabbed her by the arm. She turned and removed it.

"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," the complaint read.
Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?

33 comments:

CJinPA said...

"So this is the Grand Canyon. Breathtaking. I’m in love with the babysitter.”

surfed said...

That's the easy question. The harder question is - who marries a person they have heated disputes with?

SJ said...

Someone who hasn't been married long enough to tell the difference between a dispute that can be put off, and a dispute that needs to be resolved now.

(Not that I have any experience with that marriage thing. But it seems a good explanation.)

Abdul Abulbul Amir said...

The hot dispute may have started only after arrival to the scene. Also, it appears likely that the hubby did not consider the dispute that hot.

mrs. e said...

I think you want to say "in front of", not "next to".

Cloudesley Shovell said...

"Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?"

Would you blame the victim if it was the woman who was the pushee rather than the pusher?

Who, I wonder, pushes someone off a cliff when "she could have just walked away?"

Crunchy Frog said...

Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?

Someone seeking a violent resolution to said dispute? Also, it is unclear that the husband had any idea that they were in a dispute in the first place.

I don't buy for a minute that this was in the heat of the moment. The bitch planned this.

madAsHell said...

Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?

I know!
I know!
Please call on me, teacher!!
Please!! Please!!

That would be the dead guy at the bottom of the cliff.

EDH said...

War on men, continues:

Did the CNN reporter give a small chuckle between the words "...pushed him off a cliff" and "at Glacier National Park"?

Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?

That "someone" was his spouse. How is saying that in any way different than blaming an abused wife for her domestic beatings?

dbp said...

"Who goes walking along a deadly precipice next to someone with whom they have a hot dispute?"

Who? Somebody with murder in mind. And somebody who is an idiot and is now a dead person. So that makes two.

YoungHegelian said...

"Oh, Jordan, I am not going to fall for that t-r-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-ck!"

cubanbob said...

Yes her story is so believable. Couldn't wait to annul the marriage just had to go for the kill. Life without parole seems in order.

Mark Larson said...

When I heard their names on the radio, I could not tell who was the guy and who was the girl.

Ann Althouse said...

"Would you blame the victim if..."

You're making inferences about whom I'm blaming.

I would be blaming the woman if I think the answer is: someone who is planning murder.

BTW, if I were defending her, I would try to flip her statement to her advantage. If she were planning murder, she should have layered in more self-defense. That she blurted out that she was "angry" -- should have been "afraid" -- could be portrayed as evidence that she'd just had a sudden fright and didn't think about the meaning of her words.

As for the man, I'm not blaming the poor guy. I can easily picture a type of guy — don't know if this describes him — who thinks some brisk exercise and awesome natural beauty is a good way to work out those negative emotions. What's more beautiful than Glacier National Park?

Irene said...

This story suggests the couple already was arguing when the pair decided to hike the Highline Loop trail.
Scroll down here to see a cliff on that trail.

Sam L. said...

Honeymoon angst and anger. Married a week, IIRC.

eddie willers said...

I'd be looking at recent life insurance policies.

Ann Althouse said...

When we went to Glacier, I was too afraid to hike there.

You have these fantastic views, but then you can't enjoy them.

One more reason not to travel: The gentler landscapes of Wisconsin are more beautiful, because they don't force you to think about dying.

Ambrose said...

We must close all these killer national parks. If it saves just one life....

Birkel said...

Althouse clearly wasn't blaming the victim.

Those of you who jumped to that conclusion are doing exactly the same thing that happened when Leftists jumped at Serena Williams (tennis pro) when she said, quite sensibly, that girls shouldn't get hammered drunk around people they don't know.

Those things are not mutually exclusive.

Paddy O said...

"When we went to Glacier, I was too afraid to hike there.

You have these fantastic views, but then you can't enjoy them"

That's an interesting shift in pronouns. The particular moves from self to the other, then beyond to the general.

Peter said...

"The gentler landscapes of Wisconsin are more beautiful, because they don't force you to think about dying."

But Starved Rock in (nearby) Illinois does. No matter how many railings the state puts up, idiots climb under or over them. More than a few seem to be photo op deaths.

heyboom said...

My story would have been more along the lines of "well, he started goofing around by the edge of the cliff and I told him to stop because he was scaring me and then all of a sudden...".

I'm still wondering why she would admit to pushing him if there were no other witnesses.

Ann Althouse said...

"I'm still wondering why she would admit to pushing him if there were no other witnesses."

That's the defense argument I was suggesting above. It can make her look better. She's not crafty. Something happened, her arm was grabbed, and she feels guilty that she didn't back away and retreat. She tangled with him physically, and he died, and she feels very guilty. Count some of that in her favor.

Birkel said...

heyboom:
She didn't report her newlywed husband missing immediately. That made her lies more difficult.

She also first said she wasn't there at the time. Cameras or cell phone GPS would probably prove those lies after some preliminary investigation.

She had no plan. That's why it's murder 2 and not murder 1.

Ann Althouse said...

He grabs you. Picture it. You're already mad that your marriage is a huge mistake and he's being mean to you. You pull your arm away and then you give him a thwack, meaning just, cut it out, you need to leave me alone.

But he's caught by surprise and off balance and he falls.

Afterwards, she's tormented, thinking, I didn't need to do that, but I was so angry, I just thwacked him.

Once when I was a kid and my brother was annoying me, doing something irritating while sitting next to me, on the arm of my chair. I kept telling him to stop, and then I just pushed him (off my chair), but I caught him entirely by surprise and he went straight down and bumped his head, raising an immense lump.

You can kill a person with a sudden surprise hit.

William said...

Just as a matter of logistics it's extremely difficult to kill someone by pushing them off a cliff. As noted it's extremely difficult to get someone to climb a mountain during the course of an argument. But beyond that it's difficult to find just the right moment and just the right leverage to give the shove, especially if the victim weighs more than you. All in all I would say that she had a considerable amount of beginner's luck. I would caution the women here against planning a second honeymoon in the Rockies. Most of this was just sheer, dumb luck.

MarkW said...

Why should we believe there was any kind of a heated argument before she pushed him? There's no evidence is there? That's just her latest, self-serving version of events. If she pushed him in the heat of an argument, it's 2nd, rather than 1st degree murder.

Of course, she probably could have gotten away it pretty easily if she was just a bit brighter and A) hadn't told anyone she was having doubts about the marriage, and B) called 911 in hysterics claiming her husband had slipped and fallen off a cliff.

Deirdre Mundy said...

The mechanics of the story don't make sense to me. She tries to storm off--he grabs her arm. So he's at HER back. She turns...removes the arm.... and walks around behind him so she can push him in the back?

Huh?

She's not telling the truth yet.

David said...

She's angling for involuntary manslaughter with that version of the incident. No witnesses. But she's a she and apparently they are of the same race so she's probably going to get a little wrist slap.

Trashhauler said...

When will it be safe in this country for a husband to go hiking without being stalked and killed by his vigilante wife?

Emil Blatz said...

Does Montana have a "stand your mountainside" law?

tim maguire said...

William said... Most of this was just sheer, dumb luck.
Ha ha, yeah, I see what you did there, "sheer" dumb luck.

Birkel said...Althouse clearly wasn't blaming the victim

Bull to the "clearly" part. Besides, as Mike Royko once pointed out, what's wrong with blaming the victim? The fact is, most victims play a key role in their own victimhood. They were not helpless over their fates. We do no one any favors when we pretend that's not true.

Deirdre Mundy said...The mechanics of the story don't make sense to me.

Me neither. We have only her version and her version doesn't make sense. But then again, if it's a cover story, she could easily have done better. How about, "I was taking his picture and he stepped back to frame the rocks better, but he stepped too far and...sob! tears!"

No investigation, a blurb in News of the Weird, and a Darwin nomination. Not bad for a days work!