PORTLAND — A Portland man serving a 40-year sentence for killing his girlfriend is appealing his conviction to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Justices today will hear arguments from William Hanaman’s attorney that the judge in his 2010 trial made a mistake when he refused to instruct jurors that they could find Hanaman guilty of manslaughter if they believed he killed her in the heat of passion after being provoked.

Hanaman was convicted in the 2009 stabbing death of 47-year-old Marion Shea in his Portland apartment. He was unconscious and surrounded by prescription pills when police later found him and Shea’s body in the apartment.

Hanaman had been charged with domestic violence assault against Shea a few weeks before the killing and had been ordered to stay away from her.

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