Burns’ Second Hearing Focuses on Pornography

Jerry Burns was back in court on Thursday.

The Manchester man accused of murdering a young woman 40 years ago in Cedar Rapids sat through a second day of suppression hearings yesterday.

Burns is accused of stabbing and killing high school student Michelle Martinko in 1979.

According to our coverage partner KCRG, yesterday’s hearing continued where last Friday’s hearing left off, answering questions about the straw taken from Pizza Ranch in Manchester. Questions later shifted towards pornography Burns allegedly viewed on his cell phone.

Witnesses called by the prosecution called the content “deviant,” and “violent” in nature. Investigators said they reviewed a year’s worth of Burns’ search history in 2018, and found Burns visited and viewed these pages often.

Prosecutors say Burns visited websites that showed blonde women being strangled, stabbed and raped – including pornography that depicted sex with murder victims.

The defense for Burns argues his search history 2018 is irrelevant to a case from 1979, but witnesses argued this was out of the ordinary.

Investigators searched Burns’ phone and computer after obtaining a search warrant. The warrant was acquired after Burns’ DNA was matched to the DNA found at the crime scene in 1979.

This suppression hearing will now have a third day, which has not yet been set.

Burns’ trial is scheduled for February 10th in Scott County.


story courtesy of coverage partner KCRG