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UPDATE: Illinois man convicted in Wisconsin strangulation

UPDATED Saturday, May 10, 2014 --- 3:49 p.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- A jury in northeastern Wisconsin has convicted an Illinois man of killing his pregnant friend in 2012.

A Door County Advocate report says 37-year-old Brian M. Cooper was found guilty Friday of two counts of first-degree intentional homicide.

Cooper was charged with killing 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield, who was six months pregnant. Prosecutors say she was strangled in August 2012 at a resort in Wisconsin's Door County.

Cooper and Bromfield were both from Plainfield, Illinois. They were in Door County for the wedding of Cooper's sister.

Defense attorney John Birdsall says Cooper wasn't the baby's father, although Cooper and Bromfield did have a romantic relationship at one time.

Birdsall didn't immediately return a message left at his office Saturday.

Cooper is scheduled to be sentenced July 24.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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UPDATED Friday, May 9, 2014 --- 9:17 a.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The mother of a man being retried in Door County on homicide charges in the death of a friend and her fetus has testified about her son's troubled childhood.

Thirty-seven-year-old Brian Cooper is on trial for the second time in the strangulation death of 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield, who was six months pregnant. Cooper and Bromfield, both from Plainfield, Illinois, were in Door County for the wedding of Cooper's sister in August 2012. The first trial ended with a hung jury.

Connie Cooper testified Thursday her son was severely beaten as a child by her husband at the time, Patrick Cooper. The Door County Advocate (http://bit.ly/1mI0tox ) says the defendant's mother described the relationship between her son and Bromfield as platonic.

Brian Cooper is charged with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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UPDATED Monday, May 5, 2014 ---11:15 p.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- A retrial has begun for an Illinois man charged with killing a 21-year-old woman and her fetus at a resort in Wisconsin's Door County.

Thirty-seven-year-old Brian Cooper of Plainfield, Illinois, faces two counts of first-degree intentional homicide in the strangulation of 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield in August 2012. Cooper's first trial ended in a hung jury last year.

In opening statements Monday, prosecutor Raymond Pelrine told jurors that Cooper was in love with Bromfield and "If he couldn't have her, no one could."

The Door County Advocate reports the defense countered that although Cooper was not the baby's father, the two did have a romantic relationship at one time.

Bromfield accompanied Cooper to attend his sister's wedding on the peninsula that weekend.

The retrial is expected to last most of the week.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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UPDATED: Friday, February 1, 2013 --- 10:30 a.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- Jurors will be selected outside Door County to hear the case against an Illinois man accused of killing his friend and her unborn baby.

Brian Cooper, of Plainfield, Ill., is charged with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide in the deaths of 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield and her fetus.

Defense attorney Shane Brabazon argued in court Thursday that his client could not get a fair trial in Door County because of the extensive media coverage. Judge D. Todd Ehlers granted the motion. A decision has not been made on which county will supply the jury pool.

Cooper has pleaded not guilty by reason of mental illness. WLUK-TV says Cooper is accused of strangling Bromfield at a Door County resort last summer. The couple was on the peninsula for a wedding.

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Information from: WLUK-TV, http://www.fox11online.com

Copyright 2013: Associated Press
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UPDATED Tuesday, September 11, 2012 --- 1:06 p.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- An Illinois man charged with killing a woman and her unborn child at a Door County resort is headed to trial.

Brian Cooper appeared in court in Sturgeon Bay Tuesday on two counts of first-degree intentional homicide and one count of third-degree sexual assault. He was bound over for trial.

The 35-year-old Plainfield, Ill., man is accused of strangling 22-year-old Alisha Bromfield at the Sand Bay Beach Resort near Sturgeon Bay last month. Authorities say the two were in Door County for a wedding and that Bromfield rebuffed Cooper's attempt at a romantic relationship. A criminal complaint says Cooper choked Bromfield and then sexually assaulted her.

Investigators say Cooper tried to commit suicide before calling 911. WLUK-TV reports Cooper is due back in court Sept. 20.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, September 4, 2012 --- 11:21 p.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- An Illinois man is charged with allegedly killing a woman and her unborn child at a Wisconsin resort last month.

The prosecutor on Tuesday charged 35-year-old Brian Cooper with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide and one count of third-degree sexual assault.

Cooper is accused of strangling 22-year-old Alisha Bromfield at a Door County resort. The two, from Plainfield, Ill., were staying at a hotel for a wedding.

According to the criminal complaint, Bromfield had wanted to break it off with Cooper and he "didn't want to go home single."

The complaint says after Bromfield awoke in their hotel room, Cooper choked her and then sexually assaulted her.

Cooper said he tried to commit suicide before calling 911. WLUK-TV reports he is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, August 22, 2012 --- 11:04 a.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- A Door County prosecutor says he plans to charge an Illinois man with two counts of homicide in the death of the man's friend and her unborn child.

District Attorney Ray Pelrine says the victim, 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield, rebuffed Brian Cooper's attempts to become more than friends and strangled her after they attended a wedding in Door County last weekend. Both were from Plainfield, Ill.

Pelrine says he will also charge the 35-year-old Cooper with sexual assault because he assaulted Bromfield after he strangled her.

The Green Bay Press-Gazette (http://tinyurl.com/98nnlot ) reports Pelrine says Cooper tried to commit suicide with a butter knife and corkscrew, then drove north to Ellison Bay where he tried to drown himself. Authorities say Cooper later called the sheriff's department from Sister Bay and confessed.

Cooper is being held on $1 million bond.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 --- 10:10p.m.

From NBC15's News Partner WLUK-TV in Green Bay:

STURGEON BAY - An Illinois man is being held on $1 million cash bond in the deaths of a woman and her unborn child.

Brian Cooper, 35, of Plainfield, Ill. appeared in Door County court Tuesday afternoon.

Cooper hasn’t been charged yet in the death of 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield, also of Plainfield, Ill. But authorities are recommending two counts of first-degree intentional homicide and one for third-degree sexual assault.

Before court, Door County Sheriff Terry Vogel told FOX 11’s Bill Miston that Bromfield was six and a half months pregnant. Vogel also said that Cooper is not the father.

In court, Door County District Attorney Ray Pelrine says Cooper and Bromfield had known each other for a number of years through work.

But about one year ago, Pelrine says Cooper told investigators that the relationship had become more romantic.

“He wished it to be more and wanted it to be more and hoped it would be more, and he invited her to a family wedding that was going to be taking place in Door County this weekend for the express purpose of hopefully having that relationship go to a more romantic level that he wished,” explained Pelrine. “But she clearly did not wish.”

Pelrine says the two had a small squabble on Saturday before the wedding of Cooper’s sister at the Log Den in Egg Harbor.

The two eventually attended.

Pelrine says Cooper drank – Bromfield did not.

When they returned to Sand Bay Beach Resort & Suites in Nasewaupee, Pelrine says Cooper wanted to make plans to do something on Sunday. But Bromfield had no wish to stay, wanted to go home and proceeded to fall asleep.

That’s when Pelrine says Cooper became angry at the apparent breakup of their relationship and his feeling of her apparent coldness to him throughout the evening.

Pelrine then revealed details that some may consider disturbing.

“He then awakened her sometime between 2 and 3 in the morning, got on top of her and with his hands, he strangled her to death,” said Pelrine. “After killing her, he then undressed her and undressed himself and he had sexual intercourse with her body.”

Pelrine says Cooper awoke a couple hours later and realized what he had done and made several attempts on his life.

Pelrine says Cooper told investigators he then began driving throughout the county, eventually trying to drown himself in Ellison Bay.

Pelrine says when police took Cooper into custody at a gas station in Sister Bay – after he called police, telling dispatchers what he had done – he had no shoes on and his clothes were wet.

“There isn’t really any bond high enough I think to guarantee his appearance,” remarked Pelrine.

Pelrine asked for a $1 million cash bond.

However public defender Eric Maciolek asked for a lower bond of $500,000.00.

“Obviously this is a serious case – he’s never been on probation, never been arrested and as I said, never been incarcerated, so this is overwhelming for him,” said Maciolek.

However, Pelrine says Cooper told officers not having a relationship with Bromfield was more overwhelming to him.

“His hopes were shattered, but they were hopes that only existed in his mind, not from anything that she had led him on to believe,” said Pelrine after the hearing.

Judge Todd Ehlers agreed to Pelrine’s $1 million bond recommendation.

Cooper is scheduled to return to court Sept. 5.

Again, Cooper is not yet charged in her death. Those charges could be filed by the end of the week. Pelrine says there will probably additional charges filed.

Sheriff Vogel says Pelrine is under suicide watch in the Door County jail.

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UPDATED Monday, August 20, 2012 --- 4:20 p.m.

From NBC15's News Partner WLUK-TV in Green Bay:

STURGEON BAY - Sheriff's officials have identified the people involved in the homicide investigation in Door County.

Deputies arrested Brian M. Cooper, 35, of Plainfield, Ill. The victim was Alisha N. Bromfield, 21, also of Plainfield, Ill.

Bromfield's body was found at the Sand Bay Beach Resort near Sturgeon Bay Sunday.

Cooper was arrested at a Sister Bay business Sunday after investigators say he called the sheriff's department around noon to confess to killing his girlfriend.

Sheriff Terry Vogel says Cooper was arrested and taken to jail. Sister Bay is about 30 miles from the resort.

Vogel said Cooper and Bromfield attended a wedding Saturday night at the Log Den in Egg Harbor. The sheriff says it's the first homicide in Door County in about 11 years.

Cooper is scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday. He has not been formally charged with any crime.

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UPDATED Monday, August 20, 2012 --- 11:40 a.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The sheriff of Door County says an Illinois man has confessed to killing his girlfriend at a resort near Sturgeon Bay.

Sheriff Terry Vogel says the victim, 21-year-old Alisha Bromfield, and the 35-year-old suspect are from Plainfield, Ill. The victim's body was found at the Sand Bay Beach Resort near Sturgeon Bay Sunday.

Vogel says the suspect called the sheriff's department about noon Sunday from Sister Bay and said he had killed his girlfriend. The suspect was arrested and taken to jail. Sister Bay is about 30 miles from the resort. He's expected to appear in court Tuesday afternoon.

Authorities say the couple attended a wedding Saturday night in Egg Harbor. The sheriff says it's the first homicide in Door County in about 11 years.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Monday, August 20, 2012 --- 8:05 a.m.

STURGEON BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The sheriff of Door County says an Illinois man has confessed to killing his girlfriend at a resort near Sturgeon Bay.

The 35-year-old man could face charges as early as Monday in the death of his 21-year-old girlfriend at the Sand Bay Beach Resort. Sheriff Terry Vogel says the couple was from Will County, Ill., but has not identified them.

Vogel says the man called the sheriff's department about noon Sunday from Sister Bay and said he had killed his girlfriend. The suspect was arrested and taken to jail. Sister Bay is about 30 miles from the resort.

WLUK-TV (http://tinyurl.com/8qe55c3 ) reports authorities say the couple attended a wedding Saturday night at the Log Den in Egg Harbor. The sheriff says it's the first homicide in Door County in about 11 years.

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Information from: WLUK-TV, http://www.fox11online.com

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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Posted Sunday, August 19, 2012 --- 8:27 p.m.

NASEWAUPEE, Wis. (AP) -- Authorities are investigating a homicide at a resort complex in Door County.

Sheriff Terry Vogel says the body of a 21-year old woman was discovered there Sunday, and that the preliminary investigation determined her death was a homicide. But he did not immediately release other details.

WLUK-TV reports that several police cars and a Wisconsin Department of Justice crime lab vehicle out of Wausau were at the Sand Bay Beach Resort & Suites in the town of Nasewaupee. However, authorities would not immediately confirm if the activity at the resort was related to the homicide investigation.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


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