2011 Washington County murder conviction upheld - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

2011 Washington County murder conviction upheld

James Blum James Blum

The Iowa Court of Appeals has upheld the second degree murder conviction of a Washington man.

James Dean Blum, now 73, was sentenced to 50 years in prison in 2011 after being convicted of second degree murder in the January 2010 death of his wife Patricia.  Blum pushed his wife into a couch face first, and smothered her, after she backed a car into a garage.

Blum appealed his conviction, claiming his attorney was ineffective because he didn't argue that there was insufficient evidence to prove that Blum acted with malice aforethought.

The Court of Appeals disagreed, saying that a reasonable jury could find that Blum acted with malice aforethought when he killed his wife Patricia.

According to court documents, Blum told police, "Yeah I killed her to shut her up.  She was hollering. I should have let her up, but I didn't because I was so angry and upset."

Police also say that when the interviewing officer left the room, Blum said to himself, "I hope she's dead because I ain't going to put up with any more of it. I hope she's dead."

The Court of Appeals upheld Blum's conviction, saying that the attorney "did not have a duty to raise a meritless motion to attack the sufficiency of the evidence."

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