Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

UPDATE: Merrill man gets life sentence, opportunity to petition after 33 years; still says he's innocentSubmitted: 07/03/2014

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com


MERRILL - A 50-year-old Merrill man will spend at least 33 years in prison after being sentenced Thursday. A jury found Mark Bucki guilty in April of three counts connected to the murder and disappearance of his wife Anita.

The jury found Bucki guilty of three charges including first degree intentional homicide, strangling a person and hiding a body. The homicide charge was the most significant count determining Bucki's sentence because it carries a mandatory life sentence, but that doesn't guarantee spending life in prison.

Under state law, a mandatory life sentence carries a minimum of 20 years in prison, with the chance to petition for extended supervision afterwards. The extended supervision isn't guaranteed and would be determined by judicial leaders in the future after the minimum time in prison is met.

After more than two hours of statements, Judge Jay Tlusty sentenced Bucki to life in prison with a chance to petition after 35 years. Bucki won't get to petition for extended supervision until May 2048, after adding credit for time already served in county jail.

Judge Tlusty also sentenced Bucki to three years of prison and four years of extended supervision for the two remaining counts. Lincoln County District Attorney Donald Dunphy wanted Bucki to be sentenced to life in prison without the chance to petition, but he ultimately agrees with the sentence.

"35 years is a long time, and Mr. Bucki will be 84 or 85 by that time," Dunphy said.

Anita Bucki's family also wanted Mark Bucki to spend the rest of his life in prison without the chance for a petition. Her brother, Cliff Brown, made that clear in a letter that was read to the court.

"He deserves to pay for what he has done, he deserves to rot in a cell until the day he dies, then find a ditch and throw him in it like he did to my sister," Brown wrote in his statement.

However Mark and Anita's son, Clint, was hoping for leniency from Judge Tlusty. He has said multiple times throughout the case that his father was innocent, so he was hoping for a minimum sentence.

"I'm afraid something might happen to him while he's in there, and I won't be around to say good bye. Your honor, I need my papup, Alauna (Clint's daughter) needs her grandpa and I urge you to give my dad leniency." Clint Bucki said.

When given the opportunity to comment before the sentencing, Mark Bucki took the opportunity to say all he wanted was the best for Anita, and that he still loved her.

"If I could say I'm sorry for all of this, I would, because it would put so many people at rest," Bucki said. "But I can't because I am innocent."

Anita's sister Cheryl Cruse also spoke before the sentencing. She discussed her relationship with her sister and how Anita was always a rock to the family. Cruse says she'll still feel a void regardless of the decision.

"If only I could rewind the clock, I would gladly take the pain and suffering my sister endured during the last night of her life, just to have her back," Cruse said.

Prosecutors say Bucki plans on appealing the sentence.

If the sentence stands, Bucki would be in his mid-80's when he could petition for extended supervision, but Anita's family won't get the same second chance to see her again.

"My hard lessoned learned in this is to never leave things unsaid because you never know when it will be too late," Cruse said.

Judge Tlusty said that might be a positive lesson both families could take from the case.

The sentencing means Bucki will spend the rest of his life under the Wisconsin Correction Department's supervision.

--------------------------------------------------
July 3, 2014; 1:05 p.m.

A Lincoln County man convicted of killing his wife and hiding her body will spend at least 35 years in prison.

Thursday, a judge told 50-year-old Mark Bucki he could petition the court for release with extended supervision after serving 35 years in prison. Judicial leaders then would decide if he was fit to be released into the extended supervision program. He will spend the rest of his life somehow connected to the Wisconsin corrections system. Bucki could get credit for time served in county jail, reducing the time spent to 33 year in prison.

Bucki was convicted of first degree murder, hiding a body and strangling his wife, Anita.

The first degree murder charge carries a mandatory life sentence.

Newswatch 12's Adam Fox was in the courtroom. He'll bring you more information tonight on Newswatch 12.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

MADISON - The state of Wisconsin paid an estimated $9.7 million in one-time bonuses or various pay increases for state workers in fiscal year 2016.

An analysis by the Wisconsin State Journal found the payments went to 4,638 workers, roughly 15 percent of the state's workforce.

+ Read More

MILWAUKEE -  The attorney for a man suspected of plotting to attack a Masonic center in Milwaukee has asked for eight weeks to review evidence against his client.

Samy Mohamed Hamzeh was charged in January with five counts of illegally possessing two machine guns and a silencer.

Prosecutors said Friday that they have turned over 116 CDs of evidence, including conversations with informants that needed to be translated from Arabic to English.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (http://bit.ly/2bv4UU9 ) the 24-year-old Hamzeh has remained in custody. He was in court Friday, but did not speak.

Prosecutors say he plotted to attack a Masonic center in downtown Milwaukee, and allegedly toured the center and practiced at a shooting range.

Hamzeh's supporters and his mother have said he was set up by the FBI.

+ Read More

LAWRENCE - A 36-year-old Oneida man has died after police say he drove his car the wrong way on Interstate 41 and crashed into two other vehicles near the town of Lawrence.

+ Read More

MILWAUKEE - A New Jersey woman who was hit by a baseball during batting practice before a Brewers game in 2014 has now sued the team.

Dana Morelli of Glendora, New Jersey, claims the Brewers and their insurance company were negligent because they didn't provide an adequate barrier. The 47-year-old says they also didn't give fans proper warning about the danger of foul balls.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (http://bit.ly/2ckeI4K ) Morelli suffered multiple injuries when a ball hit her below the eye.

The lawsuit was filed in Milwaukee County Circuit Court earlier this month.

The Milwaukee Brewers declined to comment, saying they do not discuss pending litigation.

Morelli is seeking an unspecified amount in damages.

+ Read More

LAC DU FLAMBEAU - Sunday morning, Lac du Flambeau welcomed a new event to the community.

The first Carry the Torch 5K and kids' run took place at the Lake of the Torches Casino.

+ Read More

TOMAHAWK - For many kids back to school shopping means new books and backpacks for the first day of school.

However, for some parents the money and time spent shopping can add up.

"I'm going to end up all over this entire store just trying to find all the stuff that they need," said mother Deanna Sukow.

Sukow and her three children have a long shopping trip ahead of them. With a daughter in elementary school, a son in middle school, and another son entering high school. She knows just how expensive back to school shopping can be.

+ Read More

STATEWIDE - A federal appeals court has refused to reconsider a pair of rulings affecting Wisconsin's voter ID law, meaning no more changes to the requirement are likely before the November election.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here