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Inside the Brutal Story of David Francis Brom

The story of David Francis Brom

By Rare StoriesPublished 2 months ago Updated 2 months ago 3 min read

On February 18, 1988, a polite-looking 16-year-old boy, David Francis Brom, took an ax and brutally took the lives of his parents and two siblings.

Though it was established that David had quarreled with his father the previous night, yet nothing seemed to explain why a boy so courteous to hold the door for his jailer would take an ax and wreak such havoc.

The Beginning

David Brom was born October 23, 1971, in Cascade Township, Minnesota, to Bernard and Paulette Brom. He was the second of four children.

During the time David carried out the horrendous crime, the family was living in Rochester, Minnesota.

David Brom, top, and his family. Parents Bernard and Paulette, sister Diane and younger brother Ricky. His older brother, Joe, is not in this photo.

While the family which was a member of the local church, Pax Christi, seemed peaceful, those close to the family could see the turmoil in the home, particularly in the upbringing of their children. The family's eldest son, Joe Brom, who was 19 in 1988, had left the family because his parents were not in support of his lifestyle.

Joe loved punk music and had the music genre affect his style. He was wearing eyeliner and behaved in ways his parents hated. Joe hated the constant arguments he had with his family and then decided to leave the family and live with family friends.

Disappointed with how Joe turned out, the Brom parents swore never to raise another child like Joe. They tightened the rules in the house. The rules that were put in place to keep their younger children including David in check, actually drove him nuts.

The Brutal

On February 17, 1988, at around 11:30 pm, David had an argument with his father over the choice of music he listened to. Following the argument, David stayed awake till around 3 a.m. He hatched his plan and waited for the right time to execute his sinister intentions.

The axe David used can be seen in this picture

Once it was time, David picked up an axe and went into his father's master's bedroom and mercilessly battered his head and upper body as he slept. Bernard tried to fight back but the 16-year-old who looked like he wouldn't hurt a fly overpowered him. When he was later found, he was squatting on his knees close to the bed, with his right hand still up on the bed, and his head slumped over in front of him.

Once Bernard was dead, David attacked his mother, Paulette, before attacking his brother as he slept on his bed. When he saw his sister standing over their mother's body, David attacked her too. The victims sustained deep cuts on their arms, necks, faces, and heads from the axe.

The police at the Brom family home

That morning, David told a friend that he had killed his family. This was not the first time he said something similar, but they always thought he was joking as they didn't think he could do something like that.

The authorities were alerted after the rumor reached the school authorities. When they came to the Brom family house, what they saw was so horrible, that there are not enough words to describe it.

David Brom when he was arrested

On February 19, 1988, Brom was apprehended near the local post office while utilizing a pay phone. Initially, his case was directed to the juvenile court system due to his age of 16 when the crimes occurred. However, given the gravity of the offense, it was eventually transferred to the adult judicial system.

Brom's defense argued insanity as a factor in the trial, resulting in significant media and legal attention on Minnesota's utilization of the M'Naghten Rules to determine Brom's legal sanity during the crime.

David Brom in a recent photo

On October 16, 1989, Brom was found guilty of first-degree murder and sentenced to three consecutive life terms with a minimum of 52 years and 6 months before being eligible for parole.


Check out this book if you want to read more horrific true crime stories.

Horrific True Crime Stories Volume 1: The Most Terrifying and Unimaginable Cases from Across the Globe

Horrific True Crime Stories Volume 1: The Most Terrifying and Unimaginable Cases from Across the Globe

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