The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

State News

November 8, 2013

Eastern Indiana man gets 120 years for killing parents

WINCHESTER, Ind. — A judge sentenced an eastern Indiana man to 120 years in prison Thursday for the murders of his parents, calling the defendant "the definition of a cold-blooded killer."

Brian Scott Hartman did not speak at his sentencing by Randolph Circuit Judge Jay Toney for the February 2010 slayings of Brian Hartman, 53, and Cheri Hartman, 52, The Star Press reported.

A jury deliberated only an hour Oct. 10 before convicting Hartman, 37, in the fatal shooting of his father and the fatal overdose of his mother at the couple's southwestern Randolph County home, about 60 miles northeast of Indianapolis. Cheri Hartman suffered from cancer and emphysema, and her remains were cremated at her son's direction before authorities realized her husband had been slain.

Testimony during the trial showed that the father was killed with a shotgun blast and his body stuffed into a plastic container where it was found 11 days later.

Randolph County Prosecutor David Daly said Hartman that same day caused his mother's death, likely with a fatal overdose of prescription medication that was missing.

The start of the trial faced many delays as the defense fought to block statements in which police said Hartman told investigators he had killed his father at his mother's request in order to spare the elder Hartman the pain of losing his wife, and then helped his mother commit suicide with an overdose. In June, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled those statements could not be used as evidence.

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