Des Moines Man Eligible for Parole Five Years After Shooting a Woman in the Head

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DES MOINES, Iowa  --  A man convicted of shooting a woman in the head five years ago was denied early release from an Iowa prison today, but he'll be eligible again in just nine months.  That isn't sitting well with his victim.

Brian Case is serving a 45 year prison sentence.  15 years are for drug crimes.  The other 30 are for convictions including Willful Injury and gun charges after he shot Ellie Van Dam in the back of the head in 2014.

She miraculously survived.  On Wednesday she asked the Iowa Board of Parole to keep him behind bars, reminding them of the man she says he really is.

"He tormented me, he threatened our lives, my son and my mother’s lives, in order to control me and now I am begging you not to grant him parole," Van Dam testified, "Shooting me was not an accident. It was not an isolated incident. He held me at gunpoint regularly and told me if I crossed him, he would kill me."

The board denied Case early release at Wednesday's hearing, but said they would revisit the decision in nine months.  Board members complimented Case for completing all available rehabilitation classes in prison.  Tiffany Allison, founder of victims' rights group Soaring Hearts Foundation, says that is a problem.

"I’m not sure how to fix that being on the outside of the department of correction but that is something they need to look at," says Allison, "If they are going to be rehabilitating these prisoners they need to have programming available for the length of their sentence.  Mr Case’s sentence was 45 years."


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