COLUMBIA COUNTY (WKOW) -- The husband of a woman who authorities initially thought may have committed suicide in 1988 has been arrested in connection with her death.
Mark W. Bringe was arrested Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, and is expected to be charged with first degree murder in connection with his wife, Lori Bringe’s, death.
Investigators went to Arizona today and were assisted in the arrest by the Arizona Department of Public Safety. Mark W. Bringe is awaiting extradition back to Wisconsin.
“This was a hard case to investigate and without the diligence and perseverance of the DCI special agents and Sheriff’s Office investigators, this murder would have gone unsolved,” Sheriff Dennis Richards was quoted as saying in a news release.
Lorelei “Lori” J. Bringe was found dead on Aug. 19, 1988 in a wooded area off Butternut Road just west of Poynette, Wisconsin.
She died from a single gunshot wound to the left side of her head, according to the Columbia County Sheriff, and her husband, Mark, had reported to law enforcement that his wife had committed suicide.
The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office investigated Lori’s death back in 1988, but the investigation eventually went cold.
In 2014, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Detective Division reopened the case as a homicide investigation.
The Sheriff’s office was immediately joined in the investigation by the State of Wisconsin, Department of Justice, DCI special agents. Investigators spent thousands of hours needling through the case files, reviewing and testing evidence, interviewing witnesses, exhuming Lori Bunge’s body, and investigating this death.
In 2017, investigators went to Arizona on two occasions to speak with Lori’s husband, Mark.
On June 13, 2017, investigators executed a search warrant at Mark Bringe’s home in Arizona.
The Columbia County District Attorney’s Office and the Wisconsin Attorney General’s Office are prosecuting the homicide case.
The Sheriff’s Office was assisted in this investigation by Wisconsin Department of Justice, Department of Criminal Investigations, the FBI Forensic Crime Lab, Wisconsin State Crime Lab, UW Pathology Department, Columbia County Medical Examiner’s Office, Wisconsin State Patrol, McHenry County Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office, Arizona Department of Public Safety, and the McHenry County Illinois Coroner’s Office.