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Montana woman gets 85 years in prison for role in homicide

February 3, 2022 GMT

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A Montana woman was sentenced to 85 years in prison Thursday for her role in the fatal shooting of a man during a drug robbery at a motel in Ballantine, a community northeast of Billings.

China Rose Dawn Davis, 31, was convicted in September under the state’s felony murder law for the November 2019 death of Carl Archer Jr., 53. He was shot in the head.

Under the felony murder law, anyone responsible for a forcible felony that leads to the death of another person is also legally responsible for the person’s death.

“But for China’s actions and involvement, I do think that Carl Archer would still be alive,” Yellowstone County District Court Judge Ashley Harada said during sentencing, The Billings Gazette reported. “There was absolutely a plan in place to rob Carl Archer.”

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Seven months after the killing, Davis contacted investigators to report her involvement, court records said.

She said she and co-defendant James Eder planned to rob Archer of “three ounces of dope” because he owed her an ounce for driving him to Nevada and back, court records said. She also acknowledged telling Eder to bring a gun.

Eder is serving a 60-year prison sentence.