Neighbor says he thinks he heard the double murder - News, Weather & Sports

Neighbor says he thinks he heard the double murder

Terrelle White on the wtiness stand Terrelle White on the wtiness stand
Darius Phillips Darius Phillips
Brent Burke Brent Burke
Mark Gilmartin Mark Gilmartin

ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) - In September 2007, Tracy Burke and her former mother-in-law, Karen Comer, were shot and killed while her three small children were inside Comer's Rineyville home. Burke's estranged husband, Brent Burke, is charged with their murders and on trial for the fourth time. The last trial included 17 days of testimony and ended with a hung jury. On day seven of this trial, the defense rested its case.

The defense spent the morning trying to poke holes in the prosecution's case, first questioning a juvenile who told friends he was responsible for the shootings. During the investigation, police discovered his backpack with bloody items in it. Prosecutor Chris Shaw held up a backpack and said there was blood on it. Then he asked the teen's brother, Terrell White, if he recognized it.

"Yes," said White. "This is his gym bag he used."

The 17-year-old wasn't charged and said he was just kidding. A friend of the teen, Darius Phillips, testified he saw him cut his head wrestling during a basketball game and wrap his shirt around it.

The defense also challenged the 3 a.m. approximate time of death by the coroner. A neighbor of the Comer's testified he heard glass break, a dog yelp, and several gunshots between 10:05 - 10:30 p.m.

"Well to be honest with you, I thought that I had heard the murder," said Mark Gilmartin.

The defense says Brent Burke was on duty at Fort Campbell, about 150 miles away, on Sept. 10 until 11:30 p.m. eastern time.

They also played back an interview of Burke's now 8-year-old son to show conflicting statements. Last week on teh witness stand, the boy identified his father as the man with the gun inside his home.

When Shaw asked if Burke shot "Mama Tracy" the boy said yes.

"Then Brent pushed me down while I was in the hall," said the boy.

But the defense played a video testimony the boy gave on May 27 where he said he didn't know the person. In that testimony, the defense attorney asked if he knew who the person in the home was. The boy responded, "I don't know."

Because of a mandatory statewide furlough day, all courts are closed on Friday. Attorneys could start closing arguments Monday.

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