An appeals court has denied a new trial for a Wisconsin man who was sentenced to 90 years in prison for the murder of his ex-wife at her Gurnee home in 2015.
David Brocksom, 49, was found guilty by a Lake County jury in 2018 of the first-degree murder of his ex-wife, Beata Brocksom.
In a ruling filed on Tuesday, the Appellate Court of Illinois Second District said Brocksom’s conviction of first-degree murder and home invasion was a “proper predicate offense for the state’s felony-murder theory.”
Illinois’ felony-murder rule allows a defendant to be convicted of first-degree murder if an individual is killed without lawful justification when the defendant is committing a forcible felony — in this case, home invasion.
The appellate court also ruled there was no speedy-trial violation in the case.
Assistant Lake County State’s Attorney’s Jason Humke and John Brown said during Brocksom’s 2018 trial that he took his two children to a resort in the Wisconsin Dells, but left the resort in the middle of the night to drive to Beata Brocksom’s home on September 27, 2015.
Prosecutors said that David Brocksom planned to sneak into Beata’s home around 4 a.m. and kill the woman.
Prosecutors added that David Brocksom then planned to cover up the murder by making her death appear to be a suicide.
However, Beata Brocksom woke up after David Brocksom entered her home and the two struggled for control of the gun, prosecutors said.
During that struggle, Beata Brocksom was shot in the throat but she managed to crawl outside through an open window.
She was found dead several hours later in nearby bushes.
Brocksom left the home and drove back to his parents’ house in Kenosha, Wisconsin, prosecutors said.
He arranged to have his children picked up from the Wisconsin Dells hotel before turning himself into Gurnee police.
Then-Lake County State’s Attorney Michael Nerheim said at the time of the conviction that “this has been a long, difficult process for everyone involved.”
Brocksom remains held in the Menard Correction Center where he is required to serve his entire sentence without the possibility of early release.
Prison records show his projected parole date as 2105.