An appeals court has upheld the murder conviction of a northeast Missouri man, for the 2014 death of his wife.

Convicted killer Ricky Harding (photo courtesy of the Missouri Department of Corrections’ website}

The Missouri Court of Appeals Eastern District has upheld the conviction of 37-year-old Ricky Harding.

In 2015, an Audrain County jury convicted Harding of felony murder for the death of his wife, Summer Hickman. It was a five-day trial.

Prosecutors say Hickman was shot to death on Memorial Day 2014 in a house near Mexico, Missouri.

Before his trial, Harding told Columbia television station KMIZ that his wife shot herself that night, in a “freakish accident.”

Prosecutors disagreed, and said that Harding dragged Summer Hickman to the garage after the shooting and left her to die.

Prosecutors note the conviction was for felony murder because Harding was a convicted felon who could not possess the gun that caused Hickman’s death.

Harding is currently incarcerated at the maximum-security Jefferson City Correctional Center, serving a 35-year sentence for second degree murder.