Trial Date Set for Manchester Man Accused of Murder

A trial date has been set for a Manchester man accused of murder in a 39-year old cold case.

The trial for 65-year old Jerry Burns has been set for October 14th in Linn County.

Burns has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder. Police arrested him Dec. 19th, 39 years to the day after 18-year-old Michelle Martinko was killed. Her body was found the next day inside her family’s car at a Cedar Rapids mall. She had been stabbed in the face and chest.

Police say investigators matched a blood sample from the crime scene with a sample taken from Burns.

Leon Spies, an Iowa City criminal defense attorney, known for representing high-profile clients, filed to represent Burns in the trial.