‘The devil awaits you’: US woman sentenced for fatally poisoning friend with eye drops

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A US woman convicted of fatally poisoning her friend with eye drops and stealing US$290,000 (A$440k) from her, was sentenced to life in prison Friday as the victim’s loved ones chillingly warned that the “Devil awaits.”

Jessy Kurczewski remained relatively emotionless in a Waukesha, Wisconsin courtroom when Judge Jennifer Dorow read the sentencing order — crying only when she made a nearly two-hour-long testimony, The NY Post reports.

Kurczewski, 40, was convicted of 1st Degree Intentional Homicide in November for the October 2018 killing of her friend Lynn Hernan – who died after drinking from a water container Kurczewski had dumped six bottles of Visine into.

“I think the criteria that I have when I think of about, not only the seriousness of the offence but the need to protect the public, that’s one of the key factors here,” Ms Dorow said, according to WISN.

“That would make you, without the theft charges, close to 70 years of age, older than what Lynn would be today. Physically older, I think 30 years is a pretty significant amount of time.

“But my target is really 80 for you. That is why on counts two and three, you are going to serve maximum sentences, consecutive to count one and consecutive to each other.

“I think to do anything other than that given your prior forgery, misappropriation felony convictions, and your ‘lack of a good track record’ while on extended supervision would be to under appreciate the seriousness of those offences.”

Ms Dorow said the goal was to keep Kurczewski in prison until she was old enough not to be a threat to anyone.

“There’s really not anyone who’s safe from you when it comes to your willingness to steal, to defraud, she added.

The court heard that Kurczeweski had crafted fake documents, covered up her tracks and justified her motives for killing her friend before blaming others when she was caught.

During his victim impact statement, one of Ms Hernan’s friends called Kurczewski a monster and said the sentences were too lenient.

“Your Honor, Jessy cruelly murdered my friend, Lynn Hernan. I’d like the court to sentence Jessy to life in prison no chance of parole, ever. If Wisconsin had the death penalty I would be asking you for that,” James Keliher said, according to Court TV.

Keliher claimed Kurczewski was also responsible for the deaths of Hernan’s several cats and dogs and that she took advantage of Hernan when she inherited money from her parents.

“Jessy had other plans, she looked up online how to kill someone and not get caught. I believe Jessy started poisoning Lynn in 2016 and stealing Lynn’s money and her property. “Jessy poisoned Lynn like she was a rodent.”

The beautician was found dead with crushed medication on her chest in her Pewaukee condo on Oct. 3, 2018.

Kurczewski had called 911 and said her family friend was not breathing and believed she may have been suicidal.

“Lynn was not a junkie or a coward, that was Jessy. She continued to poison Lynn until she passed away, ” Keliher said.

“Jessy’s pure evil, the Devil lives inside her.

“She tried to steal Lynn’s identity which could never happen because of the simple fact that she is too damn ugly.”

Medical examiners ruled Hernan’s death a homicide after finding tetrahydrozoline, the main ingredient in Visine, in her system.

“She’s the worst of humanity, she’s a useless human being, she’s a known liar she’s a thief and now she’s a convicted murderer,” Kelliher added.

“Jessy when you get to your new home I hope you’re taken advantage of and treated like you treated Lynn and passed around like a used piece of meat.

“Life in prison without parole is the least of your worries. Women’s prison is gonna feel like a Holiday Inn compared to where you’re headed. The Devil awaits you, I hope you rot in hell.”

Kurczewski will be eligible for supervised release after at least 40 years – when she is in her eighties.