Man sentenced for charges connected to VFW shooting

Man sentenced for charges connected to VFW shooting

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - The 71-year-old man, who was found guilty on charges connected to the shooting at the Wabash Avenue VFW post, has been sentenced.

John Burghardt, 71, was found guilty in August on a total of six charges. Among those charges is two counts of attempted murder.

At Wednesday’s hearing, he was sentenced to 30-years in the Indiana Department of Corrections, but a lasting impact remains.

The bingo hall was packed and the hundreds inside will remember this moment forever.

“The victims in this case will never be satisfied," said Jess Powers, Director of Media Relations for the Vanderburgh County Prosecutor’s Office. "Unfortunately, they have been through the ringer mentally, physically, they did not deserve this. And because of his actions, they will forever live with this.”

Burghardt apologized to the victims, but the judge found a phone call between he and his wife during the trial as an aggravating circumstance. In the call, Burghardt instructs his wife to buy a gun.

The prosecutor’s office is pleased to have Burghardt off the streets for a long time.

“That showed his true personality, his true rage, his decision-making when it came to that night and if he were let out into the community, what he would continue to do," said Powers.

John Michael Burghardt (Source: Vanderburgh Co. Jail)
John Michael Burghardt (Source: Vanderburgh Co. Jail)

Burghardt has already served 222-days since his arrest in January. Those days will be counted towards his 30-year sentence.

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