Jordan Linn Graham, who had been married to Cody Lee Johnson for only eight days when Johnson's body was discovered in Montana’s Glacier National Park, was charged with his murder Monday, two months after his death.
Graham, 22, and Johnson, 25, had known each other for two years when Johnson proposed, but Graham had reservations about getting married, friends said.
“Their interaction with each other, it didn’t seem like a happy, loving relationship that you would normally see. It was just very awkward, I guess,” Cameron Frederickson, a groomsman at the wedding, told the Missoulian. Graham “was just very distant and reserved.”
Eight days after the wedding, Johnson’s body was discovered July 12 in Glacier National Park, making him the park’s first murder victim. Graham initially denied being with him the night he died but later allegedly confessed to killing her husband.
Johnson family friend Tracey Maness told the Associated Press that Graham didn’t like spending time with Johnson’s family, but that Johnson told his mother that his partner would change after they got married.
"Nobody ever could have thought something like this could happen," Maness said.
But Frederickson said he warned his friend not to marry Graham, according to the Missoulian, and that other friends also cautioned Johnson about going through with the marriage.
Authorities claim Graham murdered Johnson on July 7 in Glacier National Park by throwing her husband off a cliff during an argument, according to court papers.
The FBI, which investigated Johnson’s death, alleged Graham texted a friend the night she killed her husband.
"But dead serious if u don't hear from me at all again tonight, something happened," she texted, according to the AP.
Prosecutors say Graham originally lied about her husband’s death, allegedly telling rangers in Glacier National Park that she discovered Johnson’s body. He'd told her in a text earlier that he was going to the park with a friend, she allegedly said.
Investigators doubted Graham’s original story, according to the court papers.
"It was a place he wanted to see before he died,” she told them, the documents showed. “"He would come up here with friends to drive fast when his friends were visiting from out of town."
The charges were welcomed by Maness after the two-month-long FBI investigation.
"Two months probably isn't very long for an FBI investigation, but when you're waiting for answers, that's a lifetime," she said.
She added to the Missoulian, “Basically, we’re just holding onto hope that it will be resolved, that charges will stick and someone will be punished.”