INDIO – A 25-year-old man who admitted killing his mother on Thanksgiving said today he was cooperating with investigators and helped them find the murder weapon and the trash can he used to discard her body.
Kevin Brom said in a jailhouse interview that after his 25 years-to-life sentence was handed down last week, he led investigators to the spot where he buried the gun and showed them the location of the Burrtech trash can.
Both items were found just a few blocks from the family home on Avenida Carranza in La Quinta.
But the body of 59-year-old Terri Brom will most likely never be recovered, according to law enforcement officials. They believe her remains are underneath five months of trash at the Lamb Canyon Sanitary Landfill off Highway 79, west of Beaumont.
Brom, who pleaded guilty on Feb. 9, said he went on a ride-along with investigators the day after his sentencing to help “the people I hurt” gain closure.
Brom, who will likely be transferred to state prison later this week, said he misses his mother and wishes he “could change it.”
“What I want by doing this interview is to help the people I hurt by my actions,” Brom said, speaking from behind a glass wall in the visitor’s area of the Indio jail.
Terri Brom was reported missing by her son last Dec. 1. Her car was found the following day in the parking lot of the Stater Bros. supermarket where she worked.
According to court papers filed by prosecutors, Terri Brom told a friend she was upset on Thanksgiving morning because of her son’s insistence that his girlfriend’s daughter move in with them. The friend also told investigators that Terri Brom had asked her son to move out, and that she did not like the girlfriend.
Kevin Brom, who was arrested on Christmas Eve, initially told investigators his mother had gone to visit her sister in Lake Havasu, Ariz. But Linda Church, who was set to testify against her nephew, told investigators she had not seen her sister.
While his case was pending, prosecutors alleged that Brom was leading them on a “wild goose chase” and never told the same story twice about how his mother died.
Brom said today he did tell investigators what happened, but they “didn’t believe” him.
When asked if he believed his mother’s death was an accident, Brom responded, “No, not at all.”
“I deserve what I got,” he said.
But Brom would not provide details of what exactly happened on Thanksgiving at his mother’s home, saying “it’s painful enough” and that he didn’t want to keep hurting his loved ones.
“I’m never getting out of here,” Brom said. “I just don’t want to keep rehashing scenarios.”
Brom did say that a probation office report about the shooting gave an accurate description of his mother’s death — although the report quotes Brom as saying his mother was drunk and her death was an accident.
“I took the gun into her room to tell her I was going to get rid of it,” Brom told a probation officer, according to the report. “With (his girlfriend) Kelly’s daughter coming over, I didn’t want guns in the house. She blew up at me because she didn’t want me to get rid of it. She was paranoid about someone breaking into the house. She blew up at me and grabbed for the gun and it went off.”
Brom told the probation officer that the bullet hit his mother beneath her chin, and he tried to stop the bleeding with towels.
“I knew she was dead. I don’t know why I didn’t call the police,” Brom is quoted as saying in the report. “I don’t know why I didn’t call for help. I guess I was in shock. I thought no one would believe me if I tried to explain what happened. I put her body in the trash can out front and closed the door to her room.”
Speaking today from jail, Brom disputed several claims made by investigators and prosecutors during his case, including Deputy District Attorney Lisa DiMaria’s contention that he told the probation officer that his mother “drank every day and wouldn’t listen to the Lord’s path.” DiMaria also contended that Brom called his mother a closet alcoholic.
“I didn’t say she was a freakin’ alcoholic,” Brom said. “It was a holiday and she had a few drinks.”
Brom also denied that he had an argument with his mother over his living situation and his girlfriend’s daughter.
“There was no argument,” he said. “There was a discussion.”
He said his mother never told him to move out of the house. He said he had planned to marry his girlfriend and move out of his mother’s home, and that the girlfriend’s child was only coming for a holiday visit.
“She would have sat us down (to tell us to move out),” Brom said. “She might have planned on it, but she never got around to it.”
Brom conceded that he would sometimes argue with his mother, but said that was normal for any relationship.
He said he does not know what he was thinking when he buried the gun and hid his mother’s body, but was in a panic.
“I don’t recall exactly what was going on inside my head. I don’t know.”
He said he buried the gun so children would not find it.
DiMaria said after the sentencing that investigators are unsure what happened that night. She said forensic evidence shows the victim was most likely killed in her sleep, based on the blood pattern discovered on her mattress.
The mattress was discovered miles from her home on a roadside after Brom told them where it was. He purchased a new mattress, spray-painted his mother’s bedroom wall and washed the sheets to cover up the shooting, according to prosecutors.
Brom said he had recommitted to his Christian faith during his time in jail.
He said he and his mother were both “not on the lord’s path” at the time of her death, but he still hopes to see her in heaven some day.
“All things are forgiven,” Brom said. “It’s hard to forgive yourself sometimes.”