Lansing Judge Rejects Proposed Plea Deal in Double Murder Case

Original Case Details

Kiernan Brown, a 28-year-old Delta Township man recently withdrew his guilty pleas after being accused of beating two women to death and was reportedly also looking to kill others on a killing spree. He stands accused of trying to break into his ex-girlfriend’s house during May 2019 before attempting to complete a plan to kill four different women. He was allegedly successful in killing Kaylee Brock in her home in Holt, MI and Julie Mooney in a motel room in Meridian Township on the same day. Medical examiner results showed that both women died from blunt force trauma from numerous blows to the head. Sheriff’s deputies later pulled Brown over on the freeway and Brown allegedly confessed to the murders and even showed the deputies pictures of the bodies of the victims on his cell phone. Brown was also on parole at the time of the offense for a strangulation felony and domestic violence charges. He was also accused of violating a personal protection order that was in place against him from a former girlfriend.

Judge Aquilina’s Rejects Plea Deal

The plea deal in Brown’s case called for pleas to two second degree murder charges which would have set his sentencing guideline minimum range at 30-50 years with the possibility of parole. Brown appeared before Ingham County Circuit Court Judge Rosemarie Aquilina and the judge made it clear that she did not believe the punishment provided by this deal fits the crimes alleged. Judge Aquilina informed Brown and his attorney that she was more inclined to sentence Brown to a much higher range of 80 to 150 years in state prison because she felt that both cases were clear cut premeditated first degree murders. She made it clear during the Zoom hearing that she expects to be dead before Brown would ever get out of prison; noting that she did not want her children or grandchildren or anyone else’s children to ever live next door to Brown or someone like him. She stated that she felt that there was no opportunity for the rehabilitation of Brown, that she simply wanted to make sure that he never had the opportunity to ever be released from prison. During the pendency of Brown’s murder cases he was sentenced to 25 to 60 years for an unrelated domestic assault case. Because Judge Aquilina refused to sentence Brown to the lower guidelines as provided by the plea deal, he was given the opportunity to withdraw his pleas and continue forward towards a potential jury trial. After consulting with his attorney, Brown decided to withdraw his pleas and push forward towards a jury trial which would be scheduled at a later date.

What Can Happen Next in the Case?

Judge Aquilina accepted Brown’s withdrawal of his pleas and set a pretrial hearing date for February 2, 2021. By doing this, Brown’s case has effectively gone backwards a step as he is now back at the point where a new plea deal could be negotiated or if no deal is made, then a trial date would be set by the judge for Brown to have his day in court. It is important to note that Brown has allegedly already confessed to the murders he is accused of, and further confessed to plotting to kill two other women. Ingham County Prosecutor Carol Siemon defended the plea offer made to Brown, stating that she does not believe in life without parole sentences and believes that anybody can be rehabilitated. If Brown is convicted of the current first-degree murder charges, he will then be automatically sentenced to life without parole by the judge as the judge at that point will not even have an option to sentence him to anything less as the sentence is required by statute. It appears at the current time that the only possible way that Brown does not spend the rest of his days in prison is to win his trial. Judge Aquilina can revisit sentencing if a new plea deal is put before her that she agrees to, but the possibility of that happening at this point is unknown.

Any Further Questions?

If you or a loved one is facing the possibility of a criminal charge or prosecution in or around Lansing, then it is important to speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. At Grabel & Associates, our attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience in successfully defending criminal cases all over the state of Michigan and specifically Lansing as we maintain an office in the Boji Tower downtown. We offer a FREE consultation to anyone with questions relating to a possible or existing criminal charge against them or a loved one. Feel free to contact us on our 24/7 defense line at 1-800-342-7896. You can also contact us online or come visit us at one of our three statewide locations. We can also come to you.

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