A woman whose uncontrollable hiccupping brought her national TV appearances was convicted of first-degree murder Friday in Clearwater, Fla.
Jennifer Mee, 22, was accused of masterminding a 2010 robbery, luring a man to an apartment supposedly to buy marijuana, NBC station WFLA of Tampa reported. Prosecutors alleged she intended for Shannon Griffin, 22, to be robbed by her boyfriend and another man. But Griffin struggled and was shot four times.
When she was 15, Mee developed a case of the hiccups that wouldn't stop. She appeared on NBC's TODAY several times in 2007 because of her condition, which caused her to hiccup up to 50 times a minute.
She tried various cures, and after five weeks the hiccups stopped. She said at the time it was not known exactly why, but in a TODAY interview, she credited "a mixture of everything and all the medicine they had me on."
Her lawyer, John Trevena, said Mee still suffers from hiccups and is on medication. He also said during the trial that she suffers from schizophrenia and Tourette's syndrome, The Associated Press reported.
In closing arguments on Friday, WFLA reported, prosecutors played a jailhouse recording of Mee telling her mother: "I set the whole thing up."
Trevena countered with another part of the recording in which Mee said: "I didn't kill anybody, I didn't know this was going to happen."
But WFLA reported that Florida law allowed the jury to find her guilty of murder if it also found that she was involved in the robbery.
LaRon Raiford was convicted in the case and sentenced in August to life in prison. Mee's former boyfriend, Lamont Newton, is awaiting trial.
First published September 20 2013, 8:26 PM