More time given to examine motions in Burns murder case - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

More time given to examine motions in Burns murder case

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HARRISBURG (WSIL) -- The Saline County State's Attorney wants a special prosecutor to handle the Brian Burns murder trial.

Burns is accused of killing his estranged wife in March of 2016.

There was a hearing Tuesday to discuss a couple things: the motion for a special prosecutor and a mental fitness exam for Burns.

Burns' lawyer, Duane Verity, said he didn't get the motion for a new prosecutor until Tuesday morning.  

State's Attorney Molly Wilson Kasiar said two new assistant prosecutors she hired were contacted by Burns in the past to represent him, so she wants to avoid any possible conflicts of interest.

Verity said he hopes it's not just a stalling tactic.

"If this is something to illicit another delay, past the three and a half years, or I get the feeling that it is, and the client already has that feeling, then I'm going to speak out about it," Verity said. "You're not, at this late a date, at the 11th hour, you're not going to do this. You're not going to delay this case further so you can get somebody else in here. I haven't got that belief yet. I haven't had it long enough to think about it."

He also said the motion is beyond unusual.

"To call it unusual is like calling a three-toed sloth being unusual. It's just one of these things that you never see." Verity said.

In regards to the mental fitness exam, Kasiar said she has a report from the psychologist but neither Verity or the judge have it.

Burns will be back in court June 11 for a hearing on both matters.

He faces charges for allegedly killing his wife, Carla Burns, as the two were going through a divorce.

He's still scheduled to go on trial in September and he's already serving a 20-year prison sentence for trying to have the original prosecutor, former Saline County State's Attorney Mike Henshaw, kidnapped.

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