An Illinois man confessed to fatally shooting his girlfriend while driving his truck on New Year’s Day — telling police “I killed the woman I loved,” prosecutors said.
John H. Breseman, 50, of Barrington, was ordered held without bail Sunday in the shooting death of Christina Czuj while she was a passenger in his pickup truck on Interstate 90 in South Barrington, The Daily Herald reported.
Czuj, 54, of Sleepy Hollow, was found dead by cops with gunshot wounds near her collarbone and to the back of her head.
Prosecutors said at a bond hearing that Breseman confessed to his adult son to gunning down Czuj as he drove but claimed she attacked him while he was behind the wheel.
Investigators, however, found no evidence to back up Breseman’s claim – such as bruising on his body, Assistant Cook County State’s Attorney Margaret Johnson said.
“Self-defense or not, I [messed] up,” Breseman told police after the fatal shooting, Johnson said. “I killed the woman I loved.”
After calling his son — whom he told Czuj had urinated in his truck and hit him – Breseman reached out to his ex-girlfriend and allegedly told her “I killed Christina,” Johnson told a judge Sunday, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Breseman’s ex initially didn’t believe him, but ultimately urged him to call cops, which he did to allegedly confess to shooting Czuj — identifying his girlfriend of two years as the “passenger” in his Chevrolet Silverado whom he shot, Johnson said.
Messages sent between the pair indicate that they had been arguing prior to the fatal incident. In one email from Dec. 28, Breseman grilled Czuj about her intention to spend New Year’s Eve with other people, the Daily Herald reported.
“Maybe I’m just a jealous fool that loves you very much,” Breseman wrote in another message, authorities said.
But Czuj made clear her take on their apparently souring relationship, the Tribune reported.
“Do not call me again,” Czuj allegedly emailed Breseman.
Breseman’s attorney, meanwhile, noted during Sunday’s hearing that his client called 911 after the shooting and waited for cops to arrive – “things that guilty people tend not to do,” the Daily Herald reported.
But a judge ordered Breseman – who owns BBRC Carpenter Contractors in Hoffman Estates – be held without bail ahead of his next scheduled court appearance on Wednesday. If convicted of first-degree murder, he faces up to life in prison.
“This is a head scratcher … and a head shaker,” Judge John Lyke Jr. said during the hearing.
Czuj’s stepdaughter, meanwhile, said she worked as a certified colon hydrotherapist and loved animals – once rescuing two abandoned dogs from the side of a highway, The Daily Herald reported.
“She meant everything to me, considering I have lost my biological mother and father,” Jenni Prochaska told the newspaper. “So she was my mother and was absolutely great with her granddaughter.”
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