Killer Who Strangled, Then Raped Pregnant Woman Avoids Murder Charge

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alishaThe family of a pregnant 21-year-old who was strangled and raped are campaigning to change a Wisconsin law that let her killer avoid a murder charge because he was drunk.

Brian Cooper, 36, was found guilty last year of sexually assaulting Alisha Bromfield, but the jury were unable to decide on the murder charge because he had been intoxicated at the time of the killing.

Miss Bromfield’s family are now trying to overturn the law which prevents a murder charge while drunk because a killer’s intent can’t be proved if intoxicated.

Cooper is alleged to have strangled the 21-year-old, from Plainfield, Illinois, when she refused to restart their relationship.

Afterwards, he sexually assaulted the body of Miss Bromfield, who was six months’ pregnant. The pair had been in Wisconsin for a family wedding at the time of the attack, in August 2012.

Miss Bromfield, and her unborn baby girl who she planned to call Ava, died in the attack.

cooperDuring his trial in June, Cooper’s defense was that the alcohol he had during and after his sister’s wedding reception inhibited his ability to form intent. He has never denied killing Bromfield.

Jury foreman Mark A. Hagen told the Green Bay Press Gazette the jury’s main disagreement was over the meaning of a line in their instructions.

It read: ‘If the defendant was so intoxicated that the defendant did not intend to kill Alisha Bromfield, you must find the defendant not guilty of first-degree intentional homicide.’

After the trial, Miss Bromfield’s family launched an online campaign, calling for supporters to sign a petition to overturn the law.

On a Facebook campaign page the family posted a notice about a senate hearing on the law that is taking place next week.

‘This bill is to eliminate voluntary intoxication as a defense for criminal liability,’ the post read.

‘This new petition will go to the House and Senate and the Governor. This will be the last petition. The judicial committee was very impressed last week on how we were able to get 6,300 signatures in 48 hour. we are almost there.

‘All of our hard work and dedication to Alisha and Ava is finally here.’

Miss Bromfield’s mother, Sherry Anicich, told CBS Chicago: ‘Being drunk is no excuse for murder. We are trying to get a law passed that amends voluntary intoxication that it cannot be used as a defense for murdering.’

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