Elliott man killed after putting baby into car was twice acquitted of murder
An Elliott man twice acquitted of murder was fatally shot on Thursday after he buckled his 20-month-old baby into a car on Marena Street, Pittsburgh police said.
Michael Burkes, 32, died on the porch of his home, police said. He appeared to be walking back to the house as he was preparing to take the baby to day care when the shooting occurred, Lt. Daniel Herrmann said. Burkes died of wounds in the head and torso, according to the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office.
No shots hit Burkes' car, and the baby was not harmed, Herrmann said. The car was about 40 feet from where the shooting occurred.
Neighbors said they heard three gunshots between 6:30 and 7 a.m. Herrmann said the mother of the child had left for work. Burkes' relatives who gathered at the scene declined to comment.
Pittsburgh police arrested Burkes in March 2007 and charged him with the November 2000 murder of Sabrina Berry, 21, of the West End. Sherry Denson, 41, told police she and Burkes drove Berry to a wooded area in the South Side Slopes to kill her because she feared Berry would tell police about a credit card scheme. Denson pleaded guilty to third-degree murder, and a judge sentenced her to 10 to 40 years in prison.
A jury found Burkes not guilty of homicide in September 2007.
Police charged Burkes in May 2006 with fatally shooting Kenneth Edmonds, 22, of McDonald on March 7, 2003. He was found not guilty in that case, as well, according to online court records.
Burkes pleaded guilty in January 2003 to robbery, conspiracy, recklessly endangering another person, aggravated assault and carrying a gun without a license. A judge sentenced him to serve probation.
Herrmann said police are trying to determine a motive in the shooting.
“We know his past, and we're looking at everything,” Herrmann said.
Neighbors described Burkes as friendly and said he would often walk outside with his young son. The family moved in about a year ago.
“He was a hard-working guy, a family guy,” said Anthony Lozito, 34, of Elliott. “He was always in the yard playing with his kid.”
Margaret Harding is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-380-8519 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Inside the ropes: Shazier shows off speed
- 1 intruder killed, other shot and wounded in Carrick home invasion
- Steelers notebook: Team hasn’t called on Keisel, Harrison yet
- Steelers hope new faces breathe life into team
- Police say topless woman stabs three women during street fight in McKees Rocks
- Big Ten media days notebook: Commissioner discusses hot-button issues
- Steelers’ Spence confident he can avoid injury setbacks
- Pennsylvania Turnpike Southern Beltway extension gets funding
- Foreign influx in Allegheny County at ‘tipping point’
- State lawmaker still pushing merger of Pennsylvania Game and Fish commissions
- Old water treatment plant in Dunbar Township destroyed by fire