Woman, Denali Brehmer, pleads guilty to killing her 'best friend' after $9 Million offer from a man who catfished her online KossyDerrickBlog KossyDerrickEnt

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Sunday, February 19, 2023

Woman, Denali Brehmer, pleads guilty to killing her 'best friend' after $9 Million offer from a man who catfished her online

Denali Brehmer, 22, pleaded guilty Wednesday to first-degree murder in the 2019 killing of Cynthia Hoffman, 19, the Alaska Department of Law said.

Brehmer was 18 when she and two other teens were “catfished” by a man online who pretended to be a millionaire and convinced them to sexually assault and kill Hoffman, Alaska Public Media reported.

Hoffman, 19, died from a gunshot wound to the back of the head. Her body was dumped in the Eklutna River, about 27 miles northeast of Anchorage, court documents state.

The Anchorage district attorney’s office had previously said that Brehmer, who was 18 at the time of the crime, started planning the murder after a man she met online told her that he would give her money in exchange for evidence of her killing someone.

Brehmer knew the man as "Tyler" and had begun a relationship with him, but authorities said he had catfished her and created a fake persona as a millionaire from Kansas. His real name is Darin Schilmiller from Indiana, authorities said.

Court documents state that Brehmer and Schilmiller started planning several crimes in exchange for money, including the "rape and murder of someone in Alaska."

Schilmiller was arrested and extradited to Alaska. Now 24, Schilmiller has been held in jail on first-degree murder charges stemming from the case.

Charges against Brehmer’s two alleged accomplices — Caleb Leyland, 23, and Kayden McIntosh, 19, are pending

Authorities said that Brehmer and two of the teens tricked Hoffman into coming to Thunderbird Falls under the guise of a hiking trip. They bound her hands, feet and mouth with duct tape, shot her in the back of the head, and dumped her body in the river, court documents state.

As the crime was being committed, Brehmer sent photos and videos to Schilmiller, authorities said.

After killing Hoffman, the group destroyed some of her personal belongings and texted her parents that they had dropped her off at a park. Police said there was no evidence Hoffman had been sexually assaulted.

Schilmiller offered $9 million for the “rape and murder of someone in Alaska” — and told the teens to send him photos and videos of the horrific crime taking place.

Brehmer and her two alleged accomplices carried out the planned attack on June 2, 2019, luring Hoffman to Thunderbird Falls in Chugiak, an unincorporated community in Anchorage, under the guise of a friendly hike.

Brehmer was arrested in 2019 and indicted on charges of first-degree murder, first-degree conspiracy to commit murder, first-degree solicitation of murder and tampering with physical evidence and two charges of second-degree murder.

Following her plea of guilty to first-degree murder, the other charges were dismissed, the Alaska Department of Law said. She is scheduled to be sentenced in August and faces 30 to 99 years in prison. Her attorney did not immediately return a request for comment on Saturday.

Schilmiller was arrested and indicted on five murder counts, online court records show.

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