BROOKSVILLE, Fla. (AP) - A Tampa Bay area man has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for killing his brother.
A Hernando County judge sentenced 24-year-old Stanley Elias Eckard on Monday. A jury convicted him last month of second-degree murder after he turned down a deal from prosecutors for 20 years in prison.
Eckard maintains that he didn't mean to kill his brother, Sean, in June 2010. Eckard has said he and his brother were struggling at their parents' home, where they both lived, when he heard his brother's neck pop. He claimed he buried Sean's body in the yard to protect his mother, who has a weak heart.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, prosecutors say Eckard killed his brother because he was attracted to his brother's girlfriend.