Harris Pleads Guilty To Second-Degree Murder In Death Of Inez Burney

Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Jamichael Harris
Jamichael Harris

Jamichael Harris pleaded guilty on Tuesday to second-degree murder in the June 7, 2014, death of Inez Burney at Cypress Street Court.

He will have a 15-year prison sentence.

Harris, who was 20 at the time of the slaying, has been on house arrest since September of 2015.

Ms. Burney was found strangled to death in her bathtub after the defendant called the authorities claiming that she had drowned. The state alleges that Harris murdered the victim after she posted a picture online of a large sum of money and then tried to stage her drowning.

At the time of his arrest, the defendant was found to have fingernail scratches on his face that police said appeared to have come from the victim trying to defend herself. A forensic investigation also revealed that two items of bedding had both the victim’s and the defendant’s blood on them.

Prosecutor Lance Pope said Harris and Ms. Burney were at the same party the previous night and left together. He said there was no indication that they were arguing.

He said Harris later said he spent much of the night with Ms. Burney and at one point found her unresponsive.

The prosecutor said the medical examiner's report listed the causes of death as strangulation and blunt force trauma to the head.

He said there was not any evidence of pre-meditation that is required for a first-degree murder conviction - the original charge faced by Harris.


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