CHICAGO (AP) - A Cook County judge on Tuesday returned a guilty verdict against a man accused in the 2010 shooting death of a Chicago police officer.
In rejecting an insanity defense, Judge Timothy Joyce called 29-year-old Bryant Brewer of Chicago a liar who couldn’t be believed.
“He brutally, callously, viciously and without compunction murdered Officer Thor Soderberg,” Joyce said, according to the Chicago Tribune.
The judge added that the defense did not present any evidence that Brewer was insane at the time of Soderberg’s killing outside a South Side police building.
Brewer was convicted on charges of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder and armed robbery. Prosecutors said he is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 9.
Prosecutors alleged Brewer surprised the 43-year-old Soderberg as he changed out of his uniform and placed his duty belt down. Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Sexton said Brewer grabbed Soderberg’s gun from the officer’s belt, shot him in the back, then stood over Soderberg and pumped more shots into him.
Prosecutors also said Brewer opened fire at others who responded to the scene.
Brewer claimed he shot Soderberg in self-defense. But he also took the stand last week and testified he was proud of being a cop killer.
Defense attorneys had argued Brewer was legally insane at the time Soderberg was killed, adding he suffered from schizophrenia. But a defense expert witness, Dr. James Corcoran, testified Monday he wasn’t able to reach an opinion.
On Tuesday, forensic psychiatrist Mathew Markos, testifying for prosecutors, said Brewer has an anti-social personality, not schizophrenia. He said medical records show Brewer consistently showed signs of “aggressive” and “manipulative” behavior and asked for medication simply for its effect.
The Tribune reported that Brewer, who had appeared to fall asleep at times during Tuesday’s hearing, showed no reaction as the verdict was announced.
Soderberg’s widow, Jennifer Loudon, told local media that while she was satisfied with the verdict, “It doesn’t erase the difficulty of going on with life.”
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