Woman wants manslaughter sentence reduced, claiming she was domestic violence victim

Published: Oct. 22, 2021 at 3:06 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - A Watertown woman who stabbed her boyfriend to death in 2010 wants her sentence reduced, claiming she was a victim of domestic violence.

A hearing will be held in Jefferson County Court Monday for Krista Goley, who’s currently serving at least 27 years in prison for killing 21-year-old Tim Rolland.

In 2012, a jury found Goley guilty of first-degree manslaughter, assault and perjury.

She was acquitted of the more serious charge of murder.

In 2010, Goley stabbed Rolland during a fight in their apartment at 111 East Lynde Street in Watertown. She was 25-years-old and a Fort Drum soldier at the time of her arrest.

Goley claimed she had been a victim of domestic abuse at the hands of Rolland.

After the jury’s verdict, prosecutors said her claim probably worked in her favor to avoid a murder conviction. However, they said there was no evidence that Goley was a battered woman.

Goley has been serving her sentence at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility.

So why is she seeking a reduced sentence now? It’s because of a change in state law.

In 2019, state lawmakers passed the Domestic Violence Survivors Justice Act, giving judges more options when sentencing people who have been convicted of violence against abusive partners.

“And they made it retroactive so that people who are now sitting in prison for crimes they committed years ago are free to file a motion with the court seeking to have their sentences changed. So, that’s what happened here. This woman was a victim of domestic violence, there is evidence of that, so the court has granted a hearing to determine whether her circumstances warrant changing the sentence,” said Goley’s lawyer, Jane LaRock.

LaRock said her client has police and medical reports to prove she was a victim of physical abuse. She said the evidence will be presented during Monday’s hearing.

If it’s determined that Goley was a victim, a judge could reduce her sentence.

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