Husband pleads guilty to fatal beating amid dispute over child custody
A Spokane man who killed his estranged wife, then impersonated her on MySpace to dupe family members into thinking she was still alive, faces about 18 years in prison when he’s sentenced next month.
Uriah J. Brosnan, 33, pleaded guilty to the Jan. 28 beating death of Becky Brosnan, 32, last week. A plea deal calls for him to serve 220 months, the high end of the standard sentence for second-degree murder, said Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor John Love.
“I’m just glad we don’t have to put the kids through a trial,” said Tina Crone, Becky Brosnan’s stepmother. Crone is caring for the Brosnans’ children, ages 6 and 11. “It’s the easy way out for him, but what else is new?”
The Brosnans were married for about 10 years before their divorce sparked the custody dispute that led to Becky Brosnan’s murder, according to court documents.
Detectives found her body Feb. 9 in a debris pile behind the roofing company where Uriah Brosnan worked.
His boss told police he’d stopped at the business office the night of the murder but Uriah Brosnan hadn’t let him come inside. Police found blood smears where Brosnan had dragged his wife’s body outside, according to court documents.
For nearly two weeks, Uriah Brosnan sent text messages from his dead wife’s cell phone and updated her MySpace page to make it appear that she was alive but wanted to be left alone.
On Feb. 2, Becky Brosnan’s boyfriend, Daniel Bascetta, received a text message from her cell phone that said “she was remorseful for throwing away her marriage, that she still loved him (Brosnan) and that she was leaving town,” according to court documents.
Crone grew suspicious and called police Feb. 4. It wasn’t like Becky Brosnan not to call, and she wouldn’t have left her children with Uriah Brosnan and his girlfriend, Crone said in court documents.
The Brosnans were fighting bitterly over custody and had a history of domestic violence. They had agreed to meet the night of her death to discuss the custody battle, according to court documents.
Uriah Brosnan, who pleaded guilty last Wednesday, is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 14 in Spokane County Superior Court.
He has been at Spokane County Jail since Feb. 10.