Elliot Hughes, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Former Franklin business owner Matthew Neumann defiantly maintained his innocence as he received a 72-year prison sentence Thursday for killing his two employees and burning their bodies in a firepit.
Neumann, 44, drew audible gasps and cries from the courtroom as he denied responsibility for the deaths of Robert Hajduk and Richard Conklin and casually stating his hope that the latter – whose remains have not been positively identified – is alive and well in Mexico.
“It’s unimaginable,” Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Jeffrey A. Wagner said as he handed down his sentence. “The character you have shown in this case is not human. I see nothing good about you.”
In December, Neumann was convicted of two counts each of first-degree reckless homicide and hiding a corpse in connection with the deaths of Hajduk, 40, of Racine and Conklin, 35, of Milwaukee.
The men were employed by Neumann at his commercial cleaning business, Spot Free Cleaning, in Franklin before disappearing within a day and a half of each other in early January 2019. Human remains were discovered about a week later in a firepit on hunting property Neumann leased in rural Walworth County.