Convicted killer can’t inherit money from ex-girlfriend he murdered, judge judge
The man who murdered his ex-girlfriend and his stepsister is not allowed to inherit money from his ex’s estate as he ages in prison.
Colleen Brownell’s family had taken legal action to prevent funds in her 401K account from going to her designated beneficiary, Mark Lyczak, because he was the one who stabbed her to death in 2017.
A federal judge ruled Friday that Lyczak could not inherit the funds because the account was administered from Maryland, which has a so-called “killer rule” prohibiting killers from inheriting money from their victims.
Camden U.S. District Court Judge Renee Marie Bumb noted that Lyczak, who pleaded guilty to the December 10, 2018 murders, never filed a response or other court record to oppose the trial.
A Superior Court judge sentenced Lyczak, 46, of Burlington County to 47 years in prison. He will not be eligible for parole until 2057, when he will be 84 years old.
Lyczak pleaded guilty to the murder of Brownell, 48, and his half-sister, Alicia McCloskey, 41, at McCloskey’s home in Collingswood on December 30, 2017. He also pleaded guilty to aggravated assault for stabbing a third woman who survived.
Brownell’s friends said Lyczak and Brownell dated for over 20 years, but she broke up with her abuser in the summer of 2017. She moved in with McCloskey and McCloskey’s two sons after Lyczak violated an order. restrictive and came to her home in Cherry Hill, they said.
Lyczak showed up at the East Narberth Terrace home in Collingswood on December 30, 2017 and stabbed Brownell and McCloskey on multiple occasions. Neighbors and friends screamed and called 911 when they saw McCloskey bloodied on the porch and Lyczak, wielding a knife, refused to let the neighbors approach her.
Police found Lyczak sitting on top of a third woman, identified as his girlfriend. She survived his stab wounds.
Eileen McKay, a friend of Brownell’s, pushed lawmakers to pass a law she said could have prevented Lyczak from killing the two women. The bill would create a pilot program whereby an offender experiencing domestic violence who violated a restraining order would have to wear electronic monitoring devices that would alert authorities if they started getting too close to their victim. .