UPDATE: Gretna Man Found Guilty Of Killing Father

By: WOWT 6 News Email
By: WOWT 6 News Email
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A Gretna man accused of shooting his father to death a year ago was found guilty of first-degree murder Thursday morning.

Forty-one-year-old Steven Braesch was also found guilty of use of a firearm in the death of his 69-year-old father William Braesch and three counts of negligent child abuse. Investigators say Braesch shot his dad five times within view of three children under the age of 7.

He faces life in prison when sentenced on October 6th.

William Breasch's brother Rich said the family is satisfied with the decision.

"i thought it was exactly what we wanted...perfect," he said.

Steven had lived with his parents for about a year-and-a-half when the shooting happened in July 2013. One morning, his mother said her son acted strangely in the basement and she felt threatened. The couple left the home later that day. That night, William told his son to move out within 30 days. Steven ended up getting a gun and killing his father.

Bill Braesch

Steven's mother ran to a neighbor's house after hearing the shots. After she was unable to find her grandmother, a niece and her two younger sisters found Steve sitting outside and they sat down with him and waited for police. The niece asked Steve why he had shot her grandpa. Steve replied it was because he was mad at him.

Steven's defense didn't deny that he had shot his father. They argued it was not premeditated murder and it was Steven's deteriorating mental health that caused him to kill his father.

In a jail phone recording played in court, Steven told his mother that he had only thought about shooting his father for a few minutes before it happened. He added that the thought had crossed his mind around six months before, but he didn't even know how to load a gun then.

The defense had asked for a verdict of not guilty to the first-degree murder charge, contending it was manslaughter because the shooting occurred during a heated argument. They also said Steven's mental health problems contributed to his mental state. The judge denied that request.

But Chief Deputy Sarpy County Attorney Tricia Freeman said Steven Breasch had a lot of time to think before acting.

"He left the room. He went downstairs. He grabbed a gun that he knew to be loaded. He came back upstairs and he shot his dad at that point. I think it was compelling that two of those shots were at very close range...within 15 inches, They were at his head and there was a shell casing that rested on his side," Freeman said.

"His level of calmness as he walks out of the house to wait for the police to come," Freeman said, "There's no 'oh crap' moment where 'oh my gosh what have I just done?'"

Another compelling issue...who witnessed the shooting.

"Six feet beyond that sliding glass door at the point where he is intentionally shooting his father are three little girls that one bullet misses and we may have been here for a very different reason," she said.

Rich Braesch said how he lost his brother will always be in the front of his mind.

"He was at the point in his life where he could enjoy life and that's been taken away from him," he said..

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