Man sentenced to life in prison without parole for casino parking lot killing

BARABOO, Wis. — A family unleashed nearly two years’ worth of frustration and anger on Robert Pulvermacher in court Tuesday.

A judge sentenced the man to life in prison for killing 88-year-old Harold Johnson outside of Ho-Chunk Gaming Wisconsin Dells.

Pulvermacher didn’t say much during his sentencing hearing in Sauk County Court. He pleaded no contest to first-degree intentional homicide.

The crime itself goes back to January 2019. According to a criminal complaint, Johnson lent $100 to Pulvermacher at the casino. Johnson returned two days later, expecting Pulvermacher to pay him back.

Surveillance video showed the two men walking outside together and getting into a car. Johnson’s body was found a day later with five stab wounds, including two in his neck.

Several family members spoke before Tuesday’s sentencing. They said this may have started as a dispute over $100, but Johnson’s family said they’ve paid a much greater price.

“You stole his wallet and left him to die in his car and you used his money and gambled for seven hours. You are a coward and a waste of skin and I hope you rot in prison and then in hell,” Johnson’s daughter Nancy said.

Nancy Johnson said her father’s top priorities were faith, family and friends. She said he loved to hunt and fish, and he also served in the Army.

The judge said Pulvermacher’s life sentence will come without the possibility of parole. He’s 70 years old.

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