CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - A Buffalo woman has filed a federal appeal challenging her murder conviction in the 2009 shooting death of her husband. Leah Benjamin is serving a state sentence of 20 to 30 years on a conviction of second-degree murder in the death of Donald Benjamin. The Wyoming Supreme Court upheld Benjamin's conviction in 2011. The court on Tuesday declined to hear her request to review the case.
Benjamin's federal appeal, filed Thursday, is assigned to U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl of Casper. Lawyer Diane Courselle, a professor at the University of Wyoming law school, represents Benjamin in federal court. Courselle argues that the prosecutor at Benjamin's trial improperly misled the jury about the legitimacy of considering battered woman's syndrome in the context of her self-defense claim.