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Montana woman convicted of killing ex-boyfriend

Montana woman convicted of killing ex-boyfriend

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THOMPSON FALLS — A western Montana woman was convicted Friday of killing her ex-boyfriend in May 2018 amid a protracted custody dispute over their daughter.

A Sanders County jury convicted Danielle Jeanette Wood, 56, of deliberate homicide in the death of Matthew George LaFriniere, 50, KERR-AM reported. LaFriniere had primary custody of their daughter, court records said.

District Judge Kim Christopher scheduled sentencing for March 2. Wood, who is from Polson, remains in custody.

Wood was charged with shooting LaFriniere on May 2, 2018, less than two months after buying a gun. Wood left a residence while hosting a party to sell cooking gadgets that evening, witnesses said.

About the time she was gone, witnesses heard shots fired in the area near LaFriniere's residence.

A co-worker of LaFriniere found his body under a piece of plywood at his residence in Thompson Falls the next day, court records said. He was shot in the chest, back and hand, an autopsy found.

Prosecutors presented evidence that Wood bought a .38-caliber handgun in Ronan on March 15, 2018, and that a crossed-out entry for that day on a planner found in her house read "sweet bliss." A bullet found in LaFriniere's hand was consistent with a .38-caliber gun, investigators said.

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