Burns Murder Trial Delayed

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – A trial has been delayed for a Manchester man accused of killing Michelle Martinko almost 40 years ago.

The trial had been scheduled to begin Monday for 65-year-old Jerry Burns, who pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder. Police arrested him Dec. 19, 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.

Burns’ attorney Leon Spies had sought the delay. He says the new tentative starting date is Feb. 10, but that could change if Burns were to request moving the trial out of Linn County.

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