Lawyer: Burns may take the stand in murder trial - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Lawyer: Burns may take the stand in murder trial

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HARRISBURG, Ill. -- The lawyer for a man suspected of killing his wife says he may take the stand if and when his case goes to trial.

The court is still waiting for a doctor to perform a mental evaluation of Brian Burns.

In court Tuesday, lawyers said that doctor wants more information and still needs to meet with Burns before making his report.

The judge delayed Burns' trial earlier this year because his lawyer believes there are doubts about his mental state at the time of the crime.

Prosecutors believe he killed his wife, Carla Burns, then burned her body and scattered the ashes in April 2016.

The two were going through a divorce.

Burns' lawyer, Duane Verity, said he expects Burns to take the stand if there is a trial.

"I absolutely think he will because there's no one that's going to be able to convince a jury in Saline County of his sincerity than him," Verity said.

Burns is already serving a 20-year prison sentence.

A jury convicted him in May 2017 of trying to hire someone to kidnap the former state's attorney.

Burns is scheduled to return to court for a hearing March 19.

Both his lawyer and the prosecutor expect the doctor to finish a mental evaluation by then.

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