Eye drop murder case: Jessy Kurczewski sentenced to life in prison

Posted at 12:21 PM, Apr 05, 2024

Jessy Kurczewski was sentenced to life in prison with a chance at parole after 40 years in a Waukesha County courtroom Friday.

Kurczewski, 39, was accused of killing Lynn Hernan, 61, five years ago by poisoning her with eye drops. A jury found her guilty in November of last year. Prosecutors say Kurczewski was Hernan's caregiver and one of only two people named in Hernan's will. They say Kurczewski's crime was motivated by greed, and that she defrauded Hernan out of more than $200,000.

A jury found Kurczewski guilty of first-degree intentional homide and two felony theft counts last fall.

Kurczewski spoke in court for around an hour during the sentencing hearing. She told Judge Jennifer Dorrow, "They got it wrong," referring to investigators. "No one got to know the real story or the real us for that matter. Lynn was our family."

Kurczewski has maintained her innocence throughout the trial process.

James Kelliher, an ex-boyfriend of Hernan also spoke.

"I believe Jessy is pure evil," he told the courtroom. "Lynn did nothing wrong."

"Your charade is up," Anthony Pozza, a family friend of Hernan's, told Kurczewski. "You'll never fool anyone again."

Kurczewski's mother, Jennifer Flowers, was also a longtime friend of Hernan and spoke in defense of her daugther, saying, "It disgusts me that my family's name has been tarnished so badly."

"It is a lot to be accused and convicted of murder when I didn't do it. It won't bring her back and it won't make her loss any easier. You're holding me responsible for what she did. Those were her decisions," Kurczewski told the court.

Judge Dorow called Kurczewski's changing stories "wild" and brought up facts in the case to dismiss her claims.

Kurczewski was ordered to pay more than $380,000 in restitution.

Her mother, Jennifer Flowers, is ordered to turn over Hernan's ashes.

Kurczewski faced a mandatory life sentence for her homicide conviction. After 30 years on that count, she will serve total of 10 years for the two theft charges.

Kurczewski's defense attorney, Russell Jones, was surprised Judge Dorow gave a chance at parole. Jones says Kurczewski plans to "vigorously" appeal her conviction.

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