A judge has ruled a Tulsa woman accused of pushing her husband out a high rise window to his death will go on trial for 2nd degree murder.
On June 7, 2011, police say the couple was fighting when Amber pushed Josh and he fell through the window of their 25th floor apartment. TPD says he landed 17 stories below on a parking garage and died. Amber was seven months pregnant when Josh died.
After a preliminary hearing today the judge ruled the state met the burden of proof for both 2nd degree murder and an alternate charge of 1st degree manslaughter.
One witness testified he was in another room of the apartment when he heard the glass break and saw Hilberling crying after it happened. Another man testified he was outside the apartments when he saw the glass break and a man fall. The man testified it looked like the man was standing when he came out of the window, and was facing away from the building. The witness also said he saw Amber lean out the window and scream.
That witness called 911 and ran to the apartments and saw Amber roll Josh over while screaming hysterically.
The University Club Apartments building manager testified that Amber was screaming that she killed her husband when she walked out of the elevator on the first floor of the building. He rode the elevator with her up to the eighth floor of the parking garage.
A firefighter with the Tulsa Fire Department, who responded the scene, testified that Hilberling made several comments like "I don't want to go to jail," and "I can't believe I pushed him out the window."
A Tulsa police officer who responded to the scene testified that he was put in charge of driving Amber Hilberling from the apartment building to the detective division. He said he was waiting on the first floor of the building for Hilberling's grandmother to arrive when Amber saw a friend. The officer testified that Amber told the friend that Josh had fallen into the window, and that she tried to grab his foot, but was unable to catch him and watched Josh fall to his death.
The officer testified that during the ride from the building to the police station, Hilberling told her grandmother that she had pushed Josh out of the window.
The prosecution played an audio recording of a conversation between Hilberling and her grandmother inside the interview room at the detective division, in which she admits to pushing Josh out of the window. The officer testified that he never told either of the women that they were in private or that they were not being recorded. Hilberling's defense attorneys tried to argue that the recording was obtained illegally.
The final witness was one of Tulsa Police's lead detectives on the case, who testified about the appearance of the apartment immediately after Josh's death. He said there did not appear to be signs of a struggle. He also testified that Amber admitted to pushing Josh out of the window.
After Wednesday's hearing, one of Hilberling's defense attorneys told reporters that he felt the prosecution's case seemed weak.
"I certainly do not believe the state has proven and introduced sufficient evidence to prove the second degree murder case, because that requires they prove that she had a depraved heart," Mark Collier said. "And I just don't think the evidence supports that."
But prosecutor Michelle Keely said there was plenty of evidence that was corroborated by multiple witnesses.
"There's corroborating evidence on her wrist, the scratches that certainly could have come from the glass when she pushed him out the window," Keely said. "You have the corroborating evidence from the two independent witnesses who were down stairs who actually saw him falling out the window and falling straight down."
Hilberling is due back on court on Monday morning, October 31 for her district court arraignment, at which she could possibly enter a formal plea.
Since Josh's death, Amber Hilberling has given birth to her husband’s son, who she named Levi. She’s out of jail on a 250-thousand dollar bond but must wear a GPS monitoring device.
Josh filed a protective order against Amber in early May, claiming she threw a lamp and hit him in the head. The protective order was dropped because neither one of them showed up to a court hearing.