Minnesota man sentenced to life in prison for 1993 murder

(KSTP) – An Insanti, MN man who was found guilty by a jury earlier this year for fatally stabbing a woman in 1993 has learned his fate.

Jerry Westrom, 56, was charged with first and second degree murder.

Friday morning, a judge sentenced Westrom to life in prison.

In Minnesota, a first-degree murder conviction carries an automatic life-in-prison sentence without the possibility for parole. However, based on law in 1993, Westrom could be eligible for parole after 30 years.

Westrom was indicted in 2020 for the first-degree premeditated murder of Jeanie Childs.

Childs was 35 at the time she was killed. Her body was found in a South Minneapolis apartment on June 13, 1993, after property management was told water was coming from the apartment and entering the hallway.

A criminal complaint states that when supervisors entered Childs’ apartment, they found the shower running and her body on the floor.

The case remained unsolved until 2018 when police enlisted the help of a genealogist who gave Westrom’s name as a person who shared traits with the unknown profile developed at the crime scene.

Police began following Westrom in 2019 and obtained a napkin he had tossed in the trash at a hockey game. The DNA sample from the napkin linked to DNA samples collected at the 1993 crime scene.

A warrant for Westrom’s arrest was issued and he posted bail on Feb. 15, 2019, after he was originally charged with second-degree murder.

Westrom chose not to speak ahead of being sentenced.