(SAN DIEGO) — A California mother was convicted of second-degree murder Thursday in the 2012 shooting death of her husband.
Julie Harper, 42, cried after the jury announced its verdict. The jury reached its decision after five hours of deliberating.
A judge declared a mistrial last year after a different jury was deadlocked on whether to convict Harper in the killing of her husband Jason, a high school math teacher and volleyball coach. They have three children together.
In both trials, the Carlsbad mother of three took the stand, telling the jury her husband was verbally and physically abusive.
She admitted to killing Jason, but claimed it was self-defense.
The gun used to kill Jason Harper has never been recovered.
During the trial, jurors test-fired a handgun similar to the one Harper says she used in the shooting. The handgun requires 10 pounds of pressure to fire, according to a firearms expert.
San Diego County Deputy District Attorney Keith Watanabe said Harper’s account of the shooting didn’t add up.
“The jury was able to see through Julie Harper’s lies,” Watanabe said.
Her attorney, Paul Joseph Pfingst, expressed disappointment in the jury’s findings.
“I think we’re still in a place where there are preconceptions about how a battered wife should behave, and if she doesn’t behave that way. … I think that’s something that is difficult to explain to people still,” Pfingst said.
Harper faces 40 years to life in prison. Her sentencing is scheduled for November.
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