Sep 18, 2023

Kan. man charged in girlfriend's murder searched online for 'snapping necks,' records show

Posted Sep 18, 2023 4:55 PM
Lewis-photo Sedgwick Co.
Lewis-photo Sedgwick Co.

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas man charged with killing his pregnant girlfriend searched online for information about “snapping necks" and abortion before her body was found in the trunk of his car, newly released court records show.

The affidavit showed Alexander Lewis’ cellphone web browsing history also included searches about stun guns, lethal weapons and murder.

Lewis, who is jailed on $500,000 bond, was charged last month with capital murder in the death of Zaiylah Bronson, a Wichita State University student who was studying to become a math teacher. She was about 16 weeks pregnant.

Police at the scene of the investigation August 27- KWCH
Police at the scene of the investigation August 27- KWCH

Lewis, 22, has not entered a plea to the capital murder charge. A defense attorney for Lewis declined to discuss the contents of the affidavit with The Eagle and told The Associated Press he had no comment.

The killing happened at Bronson's apartment near campus, according to the affidavit. Surveillance cameras last recorded Bronson alive at 8:13 a.m. on Aug. 26, when the couple took a dog out into the courtyard. Soon after, he searched for “snapping necks" then left to move his car closer to her door and retrieve a backpack containing items that included duct tape and towels, the affidavit said. Other troublesome searches, including for “weapons that can kill,” had occurred the day before.

At 10:24 a.m., surveillance video showed Bronson's feet dangling from a blanket-wrapped bundle as Lewis lugged her out of the apartment. He then drove off, searching online for murder before he called 911 about an hour later, the affidavit said.

When officers arrived at Lewis' apartment, he told them Bronson was in his car trunk, saying, “I got scared," according to the affidavit. An ax and shovel were also found in the trunk.

He explained to the officers Bronson had broken up with him the day before and that they argued throughout the night. He said eventually “he wanted her to stop talking, so he ‘grabbed her’” around the neck with his arm and squeezed “until she stopped moving,” the affidavit said.