LA judge orders woman, 74, freed after 32 years

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Updated: 3/25/2014 5:57 am

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles judge has ordered that a 74-year-old woman be freed after serving 32 years of a life sentence.

Mary Virginia Jones is expected to be released Tuesday.

Jones was convicted of first-degree murder, kidnapping and robbery and sentenced to life without parole for a killing committed alongside boyfriend Mose Willis, who died while on death row.

She has always maintained that an abusive Willis forced her to help him at gunpoint, and law students at USC's Post-Conviction Justice Project took up her cause.

Los Angeles County prosecutors conducted a new investigation of her case and agreed to accept a plea of no contest for involuntary manslaughter.

On Monday a judge ruled Jones had served well over the 11-year maximum sentence for the new crime, and ordered her freed.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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