KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — A northwestern Montana man entered an Alford plea Wednesday to a charge of negligent homicide in the August 2018 stabbing death of his boyfriend.

Ryan Cody Lamb, 35, of Whitefish, entered his plea for the death of Ryan Nixon, 31, the Daily Inter Lake reported.

Under an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but acknowledges prosecutors have enough evidence to gain a conviction.

Nixon was stabbed with a pair of scissors during a sexual encounter at an apartment in Kalispell, prosecutors said.

A jury could not reach a verdict on a deliberate homicide charge in June. Defense attorneys argued Lamb was acting in self-defense after Nixon stabbed him with a fork.

Jurors voted 11-1 to acquit. District Judge Robert Allison had said he thought the evidence to convict on deliberate homicide was “thin at best,” the newspaper reported.

Prosecutors refiled the deliberate homicide charge in August and added a negligent homicide charge.

Flathead County Attorney Travis Ahner said his office is seeking a 10-year prison sentence. Lamb’s attorney, Emily Lamson, is asking for a 10-year probationary sentence.

Lamb was jailed from August 2018 until July 2019 when his bail was reduced after his trial.

Allison scheduled sentencing on Feb. 12.

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