S. Kohala resort murder sentencing postponed


Sentencing for a Washington state man who pleaded guilty this summer to murdering his girlfriend at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii in 2011 has been pushed back until December.

Philip Howard Zimmerman, 47, of Bellevue, Wash., will be sentenced at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 11 before 3rd Circuit Court Chief Judge Ronald Ibarra in Kealakekua, according to 3rd Circuit Court records. The continuation was requested by Deputy Public Defender Wendy Deweese.

Zimmerman was slated to be sentenced Wednesday on charges of second-degree murder, kidnapping and second-degree criminal property damage stemming from the May 23, 2011, fatal assault of Susan Brockert, 44, also of Bellevue, Wash. He pleaded guilty to the offenses on June 27.

Zimmerman and his girlfriend, Brockert, were vacationing at the hotel at the Mauna Lani Resort when Zimmerman beat Brockert, inflicting fatal injuries that included blunt force and sharp force trauma, according to police and court hearings and records.

According to court testimony, Brockert was hit at least twice with a stone tile as she lay face down in the hallway of their South Kohala hotel room. She was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead.