Mother of 21-year-old who was strangled and raped while six-months’ pregnant holds a campaign to overturn law that let her killer avoid murder charge because he was drunk
I’ve always hated laws that relieve a person of personal responsibility. Illinois has a law that says you can’t be tried for murder if you’re 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.
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. Miss Bromfield, and her unborn baby girl who she planned to call Ava, died in the attack.
During 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.
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.’ Cooper is due to be retried on the murder charges in the deaths of Miss Bromfield and her unborn baby May 5.
It’s amazing this mother has to go through this ridiculous fight when she’s facing the death of her daughter and grandchild. I wish there were more lawyers and politicians who used common sense when they consider laws.