Philip Holland mulling plea agreement

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The case of a Waukesha man accused of bludgeoning another man to death with a hatchet over a disagreement apparently stoked by "male ego" could soon conclude.

Online court records indicate that Philip Holland, 58, has been mulling a plea agreement from prosecutors and is scheduled to appear in Waukesha County Circuit Court on Wednesday, Dec. 14, after reviewing that offer with his attorney.

The hearing occurred after press deadline, but if Holland accepts the offer it would mean the end of his case is near – only plea and sentencing hearings would remain. He previously pleaded not guilty to the charges he's facing.

Holland stands accused of first-degree intentional homicide in the killing of 45-year-old Timothy Minkley.

A criminal complaint said Holland killed Minkley by striking him several times in the head with a hatchet during an argument last September.

After smoking marijuana together, both men fell asleep in Minkley's Waukesha apartment, the complaint said. Minkley woke up late for work and reportedly blamed Holland for his tardiness, saying Holland had forgotten to set an alarm.

Holland told police his "male ego" prevented him from peacefully walking away from the argument, according to the complaint.

The complaint said he wrapped the hatchet in a towel, left the apartment and threw it into the Fox River while biking through downtown.

Dive teams recovered the weapon, and the medical examiner's office determined the hatchet matched the nine wounds to the victim's head.

Holland was spotted on downtown police surveillance cameras, which in part led to his eventual arrest at his apartment at 120 Corrina Blvd.

He previously attempted to plead not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect – commonly referred to as an insanity defense –  but a court-ordered psychological evaluation of him determined that plea could not be substantiated, court records show.

If Holland rejects the plea agreement, opts for trial and is convicted, he's facing a mandatory life sentence.

He's also facing two misdemeanor charges for theft of movable property and possession of an illegally obtained prescription.

Another Waukesha homicide case, involving Justin Carl, is pending.

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