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Alaska Woman Sentenced to 99 Years for Orchestrating Deadly Plot Against Bestfriend


A woman from Anchorage has been given a 99-year prison sentence for planning the murder of a developmentally disabled woman in a scheme to collect a $9 million reward from a man claiming to be a wealthy individual from the Midwest.

Denali Dakota Skye Brehmer, 24, received her sentencing from Anchorage Superior Court Judge Andrew Peterson earlier this week for her involvement in the tragic death of her friend Cynthia Hoffman.

The incident took place near Thunderbird Falls, a well-known trail area just north of Anchorage, and was documented through photos and videos. In February 2023, Brehmer pleaded guilty to first-degree murder.

“She may not have pulled the trigger, but this tragic event could have been prevented if Denali Brehmer had not been involved,” stated Anchorage assistant district attorney Patrick McKay during the sentencing.

Peterson expressed deep sadness and frustration over Hoffman’s planned act of murder-for-hire, describing it as a devastating and pointless tragedy. Additionally, Peterson noted that Brehmer displayed a complete lack of remorse for their actions. He expressed his desire for her sentence to discourage others from similar actions.

The defense attorneys requested a sentence of 80 years, with 20 of those years being suspended. It is worth noting that Alaska does not have the death penalty.

Court Records Unveil Disturbing Plan in Alaska Murder Case
Judicial staff, lawyers and audience wait for the start of the opening day of a trial for the 2017 robbery of a cash transport van in Switzerland worth an estimated 40 million Swiss Francs, at the courtroom of Lyon’s courthouse on January 22, 2024.

Last month, Darin Schilmiller of New Salisbury, Indiana, was sentenced to 99 years in prison for his involvement in Hoffman’s murder. In 2019, authorities revealed that Schilmiller assumed the identity of “Tyler,” a wealthy individual from Kansas, in order to initiate an online relationship with Brehmer.

According to court documents, Brehmer and Schilmiller allegedly discussed a disturbing plan to commit heinous crimes in Alaska, several weeks before Hoffman’s tragic death. The millionaire requested either photos or video of the killing as payment.

Brehmer accepted the offer and sought assistance from four acquaintances, namely Caleb Leyland, Kayden McIntosh, and two other individuals whose identities remain undisclosed.

Leyland’s sentencing is scheduled for June. Prosecutors have stated that McIntosh, who is believed to be the gunman, will be tried as an adult in the case, despite being 16 years old at the time of Hoffman’s death. The outcome of his case is still awaiting trial.

Based on court documents, the group brought Hoffman to Thunderbird Falls. A group deviated from the designated path and discovered a route leading to the Eklutna River.

Tragically, Hoffman was restrained with duct tape, fatally shot, and disposed of in the river. Officials stated that Hoffman later messaged her family to inform them that she had been left at an Anchorage park.

After Brehmer’s arrest, she came to the realization that she had been deceived by Schilmiller, and she promptly informed the authorities about being solicited by him.

According to court documents, Schilmiller confessed to federal agents and the Indiana State Police that he specifically targeted Hoffman as the victim and instructed Brehmer to carry out the act of killing her.

According to him, Brehmer maintained communication with him throughout Hoffman’s tragic demise, sharing Snapchat photos and videos of Hoffman in a restrained state and even after her untimely passing.

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