Benjamin Sebena sentenced to serve at least 35 years
Judge imposes life sentence, but he can apply for extended supervision
Confessed murderer Benjamin Sebena will be 65 before he can apply for release on extended supervision.
Following a nearly three-hour hearing, Judge David Borowski sentenced Sebena to the mandatory sentence life in prison, with no eligibility to apply for release for 35 years in the first-degree intentional homicide of his wife, Wauwatosa Police Officer Jennifer Sebena.
Sebena is 30 years old.
The sentence was a middle ground between the prosecutor’s recommendation of a minimum of 50 years before eligibility, and the defense attorney’s suggestion of 20 to 25 years.
Borwoski, in an hour-long discussion punctuated by periods of silence, weighed the heinousness of the crime against mitigating factors, including the fact that Sebena had confessed, Sebena’s war record, and what a psychiatrist testified was perhaps the most severe cast of post-traumatic stress syndrome he had seen.
Outlining Sebena’s experience as a Marine, Borowski said he had killed 68 people, including a boy he had befriended who turned on him, and was, like others, often assigned the grisly task of cleaning human remains – including that of friends and people he served with – off of military equipment.
None of it was a reason to murder a loving wife, Borowski said. Jennifer Sebena was in the habit of leaving messages of affection and encouragement on Post-It notes strewn throughout their home, the judge said.
She was shot twice in the back of the head, and several more times with her own gun in the face. Describing pictures he was given, Borowski said she “basically had no face.”
Sebena is a danger to the community, he said. “You basically brought an act of war to Wauwatosa.”
More than 100 people jammed into the gallery, including two dozen members of the Wauwatosa Police Department.
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