(KBHB – Sturgis, SD) A Pennington County jury deliberated for about four-and-a-half hours Thursday before returning a manslaughter verdict against a Rapid City woman who was initially charged with murder.
Ashley Peltier, 36, was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter for fatally stabbing her boyfriend, James Rice, in the heart in June of 2021.
Peltier was arrested and charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Rice. The jury, however, decided to convict her on the lesser manslaughter charge.
The defense had argued that Peltier actied in self defense and reference Peltier’s testimony that Rich was abusive.
Peltier still faces a possible life prison sentence and a $50,000 fine.
A sentencing hearing will be held at a later date.