The son of the composer who wrote the song "You Light Up My Life" could spend his life behind bars after a jury convicted him of the 2010 murder of his girlfriend. NY1's Michael Herzenberg filed the following report.
Sylvie Cachay's loved ones call her sincere, kind and generous to friends, strangers and animals, a creative swimsuit designer already successful when her life was cut short at the age of 33.
Her cousin, her father and her mother called the jury's verdict that Nicholas Brooks is guilty of murdering Cachay a relief.
"I loved her, and she was hilarious, and she was such a wonderful spirit," said Francoise Jakobsson, Cachay's cousin.
"My baby, my daughter, and I think that we finally got justice," said Antonio Cachay, Sylvie Cachay's father.
"She fell into a relationship of abuse," said Sylvia Cachay, Sylvie Cachay's mother.
Cachay's mother hopes the verdict is a call to all women to beware of predators.
On December 9, 2010, Cachay and her boyfriend, Brooks, checked into a room at the Soho House, a hotel and private club.
During his trial, the district attorney proved that Brooks strangled Cachay and drowned her in the bathtub.
Brooks is the son of Oscar-winning songwriter Joseph Brooks, who penned the 1977 song "You Light Up My Life."
Joseph Brooks had his own legal trouble. He was charged with sexual attacks on 13 women. He killed himself in 2011.
His son was already arrested at the time, and the 27-year-old will now likely remain in prison for at least 25 years.
"I think she would be very happy that we are finally tranquil," Antonio Cachay said.
The Cachay family embraced each other, and even a juror, outside Manhattan Criminal Court Thursday, grateful to them for convicting Brooks of second-degree murder.
"It's unimaginable, but Sylvie is here with us," Sylvia Cachay said. "She's present. She was present through the whole time. She's with me. She comes to me every single day."
"This wound will never heal, but at least will give us some satisfaction now," Antonio Cachay said.
Cachay's family and friends started a nonprofit in her name to assist struggling artists and designers with scholarships, mentoring and internships.
The sentencing date for Brooks is scheduled for late next month. He faces 25 to years to life in prison.