Burke convicted of double homicide

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By April Wright, Reporter

HILLSVILLE — Clinton Eric Burke was convicted by a jury in Carroll County Circuit Court last Thursday for two counts of first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of Dustin Bond and George Adam Fulton last November at Fulton’s residence in Fancy Gap.

In addition to two life terms for the murders, the 8-woman, 5-man jury also sentenced Burke to three years for the use of a firearm in commission of a felony for Bond's murder; five years for the use of a firearm in commission of a felony for Fulton's murder; 10 years for malicious wounding of Amanda Bond — sister of Dustin Bond and fianc of Fulton; five years for the use of a firearm in commission of a felony for the second-degree malicious wounding of Amanda Bond; and 20 years for statutory burglary.

Around midnight on Nov. 12, 2007, the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department received a call from Amanda Bond, 20, who said her brother and fianc had been shot in the head.

Carroll Deputy Barry Lineberry and Sgt. David Shockley responded to the scene of the shootings at 268 Frogspur Road in Fancy Gap.

When Lineberry arrived, Amanda Bond came out of the residence asking for help. Her arm was bleeding.

Lineberry found Fulton on the couch and Dustin Bond on a chair in the living room. Both had gunshot wounds to the head.

According to opening statements Wednesday from Carroll Commonwealth’s Attorney Greg Goad, on the night of the double homicide, Payne got off work at the Results calling center at the Crossroads Institute in Galax at 10 p.m.

Payne picked up Burke and his friend, Randy Martin, at Burke’s mother’s house in Gladesboro.

When Burke got into the car, he had a large object in a plastic bag.

Burke ordered Payne to drive to several locations — including Burke’s grandfather’s house, where he allegedly picked up a weapon — before heading to Fulton's residence where Fulton, Amanda and Dustin Bond were all asleep.

The prosecutor alleged that Burke confronted the trio because they planned to testify against him.

Goad said Payne drove up the road with Martin in the car while Burke busted into the trailer and fired the gun, killing the two men and wounding Amanda Bond.

Payne returned shortly to pick up Burke, who had changed clothes in the meantime. He left the gun exposed and placed his clothing in the bag.

At Burke's orders, Payne then drove back to the Gladesboro area, where Burke pitched the shotgun into a pond. Then, Payne drove a small distance, where Burke burned the clothing in a field.

Police recovered the shotgun, registered in the name of Burke's grandfather, in the pond and recovered evidence from the burn pile.

Forensic Evidence

On Thursday — the second day of the trial — Burke again stood in front of Judge Brett Geisler.

Goad continued to call prosecution witnesses, including Carroll County Investigator Venton Smith.

Shortly after the murder, Smith obtained a buccal (cheek) swab from Burke and sent it to the state forensic lab for DNA testing. Also sent to the lab were three shotgun shells found at the scene.

Smith received the certificate of analysis on March 5 this year.

“There was no material on the shells to match his DNA,” Smith told Burke’s defense attorney, Jonathan Venzie.

Smith confirmed that the shells found at the scene had not been disturbed and were handled carefully through the use of gloves by Smith and Carroll Investigator Fred Bobbitt.

Were fingerprints found on the shells? Venzie asked.

“No, fingerprints were not found on the shells,” said Smith. “We didn’t see any other DNA on them either — no blood or anything.”

Sarah Parker, a fingerprint examiner of the Virginia Department of Forensic Science testified that she examined for fingerprints on the shotgun that was recovered from the pond, finding none.

“If the weapon was submerged underwater, the fingerprints could disappear,” she said, because fingerprints are made up of oil and 99 percent water. “You don’t always get the prints depending on water, weather and time.”

It would also be difficult to recover fingerprints if someone used gloves, Parker said.

Richard Roberts, a firearms examiner at the Department of Forensic Science who examined the shotgun and shells that were recovered, confirmed that the shells were indeed fired from the shotgun recovered from the pond.

“There is no doubt in my mind that those shells were fired from that gun,” said Roberts.

Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Amy Tharp received Fulton’s body on Nov. 13, 2007, with a gunshot wound to the face and injuries to the left hand. As a result of the blow to the face, he received severe injuries to his skull and brain.

Tharp said the injury to his hand could have been made during a separate incident or his hand could have been in line with his face when he was shot.

Bond’s body was also examined by Tharp on Nov. 13. He received a shotgun wound to the head at a much closer range than Fulton, in which his face contained gun powder residue and burns.

“I’m not a gun expert, but you usually have to be within a couple feet of range for that to happen,” said Tharp.

Tharp said both bodies had marijuana in their system, and Fulton had a traces of alcohol in his blood.

“Other than that, they were healthy 19- and 17-year-olds,” she said.

Burke Testifies

Venzie called Burke to the stand.

Burke said that he saw Randy Martin on Nov. 12, 2007, at 2 p.m.

Martin was close to Martin's brother’s house in the Gladesboro area.

When Burke was with Martin that day, Martin was carrying Burke’s grandfather's gun. “I had told him to walk out the road and meet me,” Burke said. “I didn’t know why he was carrying it.”

The defendant said he had taken the shotgun to Martin earlier, and thought Martin was trying to get shells to sell the weapon.

Burke and Martin walked up Snake Creek Road and down Gladesboro Road, while Martin carried the gun. They separated — Burke went to his mother’s house and Martin went to a friend’s house.

At 7 p.m., Martin came to Burke’s mother’s house, where they played video games.

“[Martin] asked if he could get a ride to his sister’s house near Fancy Gap,” said Burke. “I called [Payne] and she said she would give him a ride.”

When Payne came to pick up Martin and Burke, Martin didn’t have the gun, according to Burke's testimony, but he had a set of clothes.

“When I got in the car, she said she needed gas,” Burke said. “[Payne] said she only had $5. I went into the house to get money and found $5.”

They drove to Fancy Gap to the Kangaroo Express gas station, less than a mile from Fulton’s house.

Burke, Martin and Payne drove by Fulton’s house. The car headed back to Gladesboro, where Payne had a very short conversation with Blake Meredith at Gladesboro Elementary School around 11:45 p.m., Burke said.

So Burke could find some additional cash, he said they dropped him off a ways from his grandfather’s house in Gladesboro, which is close to a mile away from Gladesboro Elementary School.

When Payne dropped off Burke, she drove toward Fancy Gap and out of site.

Burke testified that, while at his grandfather’s house, he had to pry the garage door open with a shovel. He rummaged through drawers and shelves looking for change, and went outside to search three of his grandfather’s trucks.

Burke went back into the garage and grabbed his grandfather’s gun and walked halfway to Gladesboro Elementary. He met Payne and Martin as he stood on the side of the road, and they picked him up.

“I asked Amanda if she could get rid of the gun [sell it] because I needed money,” Burke said.

Payne had made a phone call, and then drove Burke back to his grandfather's, where he dropped off the gun.

“I put the gun back, so he wouldn’t know that it was stolen,” Burke said.

While Burke was at his grandfather’s, he said Payne drove up the road — she was gone less than a minute — and came back to pick him up.

Afterwards, Burke said Martin was dropped off at a friend’s house and he and Payne went to her father’s home where they spent the night.

So you were at Gladesboro Elementary around 11:45, you went to your grandpa's — how long were you there? asked Venzie.

Burke said he was not wearing a watch and couldn’t recall the time.

Did you break into Fulton’s trailer and shoot Dustin Bond, George Adam Fulton and wound Amanda Bond? Venzie asked.

“No,” Burke replied.

Goad cross-examined Burke, again bringing up that Burke had complained to the police department in February 2007 that Fulton had stolen his guns.

You didn’t like Fulton, did you? asked Goad.

“I liked him very well,” said Burke. “I never threatened him.”

You heard the witnesses say differently, noted Goad.

“You heard one witness say differently,” Burke argued.

How tall are you? Goad asked.

Burke replied six feet — the same height of the person that Amanda Bond described breaking in to Fulton’s trailer.

Defense Disputes Evidence

During closing statements, Venzie said the timeline just doesn't match between the witnesses' and Burke's testimonies.

A few minutes before the incident — around 11:45 p.m. — Burke, Martin and Payne were at Gladesboro Elementary School, Venzie reviewed, and the 911 call came in at 11:58 — just before midnight.

Instead of going back towards Fancy Gap, Payne and Martin claim that they drove Burke to his grandpa's house in Gladesboro. It is nearly a 10- to 12-minute trip between Fulton's house and Burke's grandfather's house.

However, Burke was dropped off before he got to his grandfather's, walked a distance, spent time prying open the door in the garage, rummaged through the garage and cars looking for money, got his grandfather's shotgun and walked a half-mile back to where Payne's car met him on the road.

If Burke spent several minutes rummaging, it makes it nearly impossible to be at Fulton's house before midnight, Venzie told the jury, trying to convince them that Martin and/or Payne could be the killer.

“After they left Gladesboro School, there was just enough time to get to Fulton's house and not enough time to go to his grandpa's,” said Venzie. “We know that Randy Martin did it or was with the person who did.

“Everybody has created a timeline that doesn't work.”

After Martin struck a deal, he was given a free pass by the Commonwealth, Venzie said, and was able to take the police directly to the weapon and the burn pile.

“Randy Martin, who seems to know everything, gets to walk,” Venzie said. “At first he lied and said he wasn't involved and then admitted to lying.”

“Payne lied when she talked to the police the first, maybe the second, maybe the third time — or even here today,” he said, referring to how she said she had been with Burke all day, when in fact she wasn't, and that she had left out of her statement the important detail that they went to Burke's grandfather's house.

And even though four or five days later she was facing a life sentence for her alleged involvement in the shootings, Payne got out of it pretty easy. She'll only have to serve a small sentence in jail, he said.

“Randy Martin and Amanda Payne profess never talking to each other since,” said Venzie. “They are both professed and confessed liars.”


Makes Its Case

Goad reminded the jury that Carroll Deputy Glenn Edmonds saw Martin and Burke walking that day, while Martin carried the gun, and Martin acknowledges that. That’s proof that backs up Martin’s statement, Goad said.

“Burke had had previous trouble with Fulton,” said Goad. “Burke said he was going to get Fulton for taking his gun.

“Amanda Payne said that Burke said that he was going to scare Fulton and Amanda Bond about not testifying against him. And Randy Martin said Burke said he was going to take care of his problem.”

Burke had complained to the police in February 2007 about Fulton stealing his gun and even threatened Fulton.

So that's his motivation, Goad said.

Bond, he said, described the intruder as being around 5 feet, 11 inches.

Martin is rather short, he noted.

Goad said the time argument is misplaced because not all clocks or watches hold the exact time and people remember different things.

“Their stories didn't match,” admitted Goad. “That means that they didn't get together.”

Martin is not intelligent enough to be a criminal mastermind, Goad said.

“I tried to get him to describe Burke's style of walking and mannerisms,” Goad said. “He said he walks all over the place.”

And the reason Payne and Martin didn't come forward was because they were scared.

“Every bit of this points to the defendant and he's guilty as charged,” Goad told the jury.

After a three-hour deliberation, the jury found Burke guilty of all seven charges.


When Dustin Bond's father and sister and Fulton's father took the stand, they wept as they described how their loss has shattered their lives.

After losing his wife to breast cancer, and his parents, “losing a child is the most devastating thing I've ever had to go through,” said Alfred Emerson, Fulton's father. “I'll never get over this for the rest of my life.”

“Each morning I wake up, I wonder why he didn't wake me up,” said Terry Bond, the father of Dustin and Amanda Bond. “And then I realize that he's gone.”

Terry Bond recalled the first time Dustin rode his bike, and how he loved hunting and riding horses, but everybody and everyone came second to his sister, whom he felt that he had to protect.

“He was a good young man, very funny and well-mannered,” he said. “He could make you laugh even when you didn't want to.”

Amanda Bond — Fulton's fiance and Dustin Bond's sister — said she can no longer remember the good times she had with her brother and Fulton. Instead, all she can picture is how they looked after the blows to their head, she said through tears.

“I'm scared to be alone, I need counseling and medication, I can't sleep and when I do, I wake up remembering what happened that night,” she said. “It's really hard to go on without them.”

Goad reviewed Burke's previous convictions, which include breaking and entering, two counts of grand larceny, possession of marijuana and two counts of reckless driving. “I urge you to impose the maximum punishment to all charges,” Goad told the jury.

The maximum sentence is life, and the minimum is 73 years. “If you give anything other than the maximum punishment, that will be a gesture of grace.”

After more than two hours of deliberation on the amount of punishment, the jury determined that Burke will serve two life terms, plus a combined 43 years for all convictions.

Formal sentencing will be Jan. 12.


In the first day of Clinton Eric Burke’s trial for a double homicide on Wednesday, the defense argued that statements of two key prosecution witnesses did not add up.

Jonathan Venzie said the two witnesses left out pieces of the puzzle during statements to the police and have admitted to lying.

Burke, 22, of Hillsville is charged for a double homicide that happened in Fancy Gap last November. According to police reports, Burke went to the home of Adam Fulton, where he allegedly shot and killed 19-year-old Fulton and 17-year-old Dustin Bond and wounded Dustin’s sister.

Burke, who appeared before Judge Brett Geisler in Carroll County Circuit Court, pleaded not guilty to seven charges on Wednesday, including:

• first-degree murder of George Adam Fulton;

• first-degree murder of Dustin Bond;

• one count using a firearm in commission of a felony after shooting Bond;

• one count of using a firearm for the shooting death of Fulton;

• one count of malicious wounding;

• one count of burglary;

• one count of malicious wounding for shooting Amanda Bond, the sister of Dustin;

• and one count of malicious wounding for the shooting of Dustin Bond.

Also charged in connection with the shootings is Amanda Payne, 27, of Laurel, who has reached a plea agreement with the Commonwealth. Two counts of conspiring to commit murder were dismissed after a preliminary hearing, but Payne still faces two counts of first-degree murder as a principal in the second degree, similar to being an accomplice to a crime.

The Case Against Burke

Around midnight on Nov. 12, 2007, a call came through the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department.

Carroll Deputy Barry Lineberry, standing next to the phone, answered and quickly handed it to dispatcher Carrie Campbell, now a deputy.

One the other end of the call was Amanda Bond, 20, who told Campbell that her brother and fianc had been shot in the head.

Bond said Fulton was still breathing, but her brother was dead.

Lineberry and Sgt. David Shockley headed out quickly, responded to the scene of the shootings at 268 Frogspur Road in Fancy Gap.

When Lineberry arrived, Amanda Bond came out of the residence saying “Help me.”

Police said Bond had a bleeding arm.

Lineberry found Fulton on the couch and Dustin Bond on a chair in the living room. Both had gunshot wounds to the head.

According to opening statements Wednesday from Carroll Commonwealth’s Attorney Greg Goad, on the night of the double homicide, Payne got off work at the Results calling center at the Crossroads Institute in Galax at 10 p.m.

Payne picked up Burke and his friend, Randy Martin, at Burke’s mother’s house in Gladesboro.

When Burke got into the car, he had a large object in a plastic bag.

Burke had ordered Payne to drive in several directions, and ordered her to stop at the Kangaroo gas station in Fancy Gap. Payne then ordered her to go back to Gladesboro, where they met with Payne’s friend, Blake Meredith, for a few minutes at Gladesboro Elementary School.

They drove to Burke’s grandfather’s house, where he allegedly picked up a weapon.

After obtaining the weapon, they headed to the residence where Fulton, Amanda and Dustin Bond were all asleep.

Goad said Payne drove up the road with Martin in the car while Burke busted into the trailer and fired the gun, killing the two men and wounding Amanda Bond.

Payne returned to pick up Burke shortly after, who had changed clothes in the meantime. He left the gun exposed and placed his clothing in the bag.

At the orders of Burke, Payne then drove back to the Gladesboro area, where Burke pitched the shotgun into a pond. Then, Payne drove a small distance, where Burke burned the clothing in a field.

The police recovered the shotgun in the pond and recovered evidence from the burn pile.

“I believe there is sufficient evidence to find Burke guilty,” Goad told the jury.

Defense Arguments

“A surprising amount of this information is not in controversy,” said Venzie, noting that Burke, Payne and Martin were together that night, had fueled up, had gone to Gladesboro and drove around.

“Payne is a liar,” he told the jury. “She lied when she made her

statements to the police and she will admit today that she lied. You will be asked to believe a liar and to rely on the statements of Randy Martin, who took the police to the weapon.”

Shortly after Martin gave a statement to the police on the evening of Nov. 13, the Commonwealth decided not to press any charges against the witness.

“They gave him a free get-off-of-jail pass based on what Randy Martin said,” Venzie told the jury.

Although Payne was arrested and charged, Venzie argued that she only got 90 days active jail time and probation. “That’s what it cost to buy her testimony,” he said. “But they’re not getting it all right. Their statements jump around.”

Glenn Edmonds

Edmonds, an officer at the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department, was the first prosecution witness called to the stand.

While off duty, Edmonds testified, he saw Burke at 3 p.m. the day of the shootings.

Edmonds said he was standing in his yard, cleaning his vehicle, when he saw Burke and another man walking. The other man carried a shotgun by his side, past Edmond’s residence and out of sight.

Edmonds lives two doors down from Burke’s parents and a quarter-mile from Burke’s grandparents’ house.

The officer said he thought the weapon was a semiautomatic shotgun.

Amanda Bond

Bond testified that she has known Burke, Payne and Martin for five years.

The night of the shootings, Bond said, Payne had called Adam Fulton wanting to buy prescription drugs. Fulton told her to come by the next morning.

Shortly after, Amanda Bond and Fulton fell asleep on the couch between 10:30 and 11 p.m., while Dustin Bond slept on the recliner. The front door was closed, but wouldn’t lock, she said.

Amanda Bond woke up to gunshots and saw her fianc with a shot to the face and her brother with a shot to the head.

“I didn’t know what kind of gun it was until I saw 12-gauge shells on the floor, she said.

The lights were out in the living room. Even though she couldn’t see the face of the man who busted into the living room and fired the shots, Bond said she could see the clothing he was wearing as he ran out the door.

He was wearing coveralls with a jacket, and Bond guessed he was around six feet tall.

What was his walk like? Goad asked.

“He walked with a hunch in his back and picked up his legs high,” she said.

Bond said she immediately reached for her cell phone and dialed 911. Staying on the phone with the dispatcher until authorities arrived, she grabbed a knife, leaned against the door and turned the outside light on.

“When I was on the phone, I realized that I had been shot in the shoulder,” Bond said.

She showed the scars on her left shoulder to the jury.

During the cross examination, Venzie asked Bond if there had been discussion between Payne and Fulton of other drugs.

Not that night, she answered, but Fulton had sold drugs to her once of twice before.

Had Burke ever had conversations about your fianc, Fulton? Venzie asked.

“Two nights before, we had rode around. Adam and I started fighting,” said Bond. “Clinton told Adam that if he ever touched me again, he would kill him.”

Several months before, when he thought Fulton stole his shotgun, Burke told Fulton that “he would get back at him for it,” she continued.

Fulton had been beating you, hadn’t he? Venzie asked Bond.

“Yes,” she said. “But he was hitting me at the time Clinton said that to him two nights ago.”

Venzie asked if Bond saw the man who shot her brother and Fulton walking or running out the door. “I saw him running out the door. But I saw him walking through the yard when I was talking to 911,” she said, noting that she was looking out the door window.

Venzie reviewed her statement to the police, noticing that Bond had nothing written about turning on a light.

“After I had time to regain my thoughts, I knew I turned the light on,” she said.

Lights at the campground across the street from Fulton’s home also lit up the yard. However, Bond was unable to tell the color of the car that the gunman rode away in.

Have you seen any clothing evidence that would give you any idea what the gunman was wearing? Venzie asked, wondering how Bond could see the man’s clothing if the lights were out in the home.

Bond confirmed what she saw — coveralls with a jacket.

Amanda Payne

Payne testified that she had been friends with Burke for more than five years.

The night of the incident, like most every night, Burke had called Payne to come by and pick him up after she got off work.

The two would ride the roads and get high, Payne said.

Payne picked up Burke and Randy Martin at his mother’s home in Gladesboro between 10:30 and 11 p.m.

Martin got into the back seat and Burke, who she said was wearing coveralls, sat on the front passenger’s side.

“Clinton went into the garage and got a large object in a black trash bag,” Payne said.

Burke told her to drive to Fancy Gap to get gas, and they stopped at the Kangaroo gas station.

(Theresa McGrady, manager of Kangaroo Express, later testified that police used the store’s security cameras to determine that Burke, Martin and Payne were at the store from 11:08 to 11:14 p.m. on Nov. 12.)

Burke pumped the gas, Martin went inside to pay and Payne sat in the car and checked her voicemail.

“Adam had left a message asking if I needed anything,” Payne said. “I told him that I needed [prescription pills] and marijuana, and then he told me to call back in 30 minutes.”

Then, they headed back to Gladesboro, where Burke, Payne and Martin met with Blake Meredith at Gladesboro Elementary School before midnight, Payne said.

(Meredith’s testimony later confirmed this.)

Did you wonder why Burke was ordering you to drive to these places? Goad asked.

“I thought we were riding around like we always did,” she said.

According to Payne, Burke asked her to drive to his grandfather’s house in Gladesboro. There, Burke got out of the car with the plastic bag and the gun, told Burke to drive down the road and turn around.

Payne said she thought the reason for not turning into the driveway was because it would set off the motion-sensor light in the driveway.

When she returned, Burke put a long object, covered by a black plastic bag, in the back seat.

Payne drove back to Fancy Gap, as requested by Burke, by getting on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and went to Fulton’s house.

“He said he was gong to scare Adam and Amanda so that they didn’t testify against Clinton on charges he had,” Payne said. “He told me to go down the road and come back.”

Burke got out of the car with the object. When Payne and Martin returned to pick him up, Burke was standing near the road, wearing different clothes, with the gun exposed.

Now wearing a white shirt, shorts and flip flops, he put the clothes he was previously wearing in the black bag, Payne testified.

He then got in the car and rested the gun to his left side. Payne said he told her to get on the parkway and stop at a picnic shelter near a pond.

“Clinton got out with the gun and came back without it,” she said. “He told me to stop at a field nearby and Clinton and Randy took the bag and set it on fire.”

Burke, Martin and Payne left, but soon returned to make sure the fire was out.

Payne then drove Martin to a friend’s house in Hillsville, and Burke spent the night at Payne’s house where they slept in the same bed in the basement.

Did Burke make any statements to you about what happened? asked Goad.

“I don’t recall any conversations,” she answered.

Payne admitted leaving out details of events when police questioned her the next morning.

“You told police that you hadn’t been anywhere near Burke, but that wasn’t true,” Venzie said.

“I was scared and trying to protect Clinton,” said Payne. “I knew he killed two people then because they were going to testify against him and he didn’t want them to say anything.”

If you were scared, why did you sleep in the bed with him? Venzie asked in the cross-examination.

Payne said she didn’t know until the next morning that something had happened at Fulton’s house.

Payne gave police a statement on March 3 and a narrative statement on March 5 that provided more details of the incident.

“In neither statement did you talk about going to his grandpa’s. Is this because you and Randy got together to compare notes?” Venzie asked.

Venzie also noted that during the trial, she was unsure of the time she talked to Meredith, but in her statement to the police, Payne said she met with him between 11:45 and 11:50.

“No, I told the truth,” she said. “I came clean on [March] 5th.”

“Is it two misdemeanors if you say what the Commonwealth wants you to? You got a deal of a lifetime,” Venzie added, referring to Payne’s short sentence for charges carrying the same penalty as murder.

Randy Martin

Martin, a key witness of the trial, said he and Burke had been together on Nov. 12, watching movies.

Burke brought Martin a shotgun to repair the gun’s jam.

He confirmed that Burke was wearing coveralls and a white shirt that day.

Payne picked him and Burke up at 11 p.m. and Burke had placed the gun in a bag.

Martin’s testimony was similar to Payne’s.

Venzie again noted that Martin didn’t include anything in his statement to police about going to Burke’s grandpa’s house.

When they arrived at Fulton’s, Martin said Burke pulled out a newer shotgun than Martin had worked on that day, he testified, which Burke had picked up from his grandparents’ house.

“Before he went into Fulton’s house, he said he was going to take care of his problem,” he said. “But he didn’t say what it was.”

When approached by police the next morning, Martin didn’t provide any information and said he didn’t know anything about the murders.

That evening, however, he took police to the pond where the weapon was thrown and the burn area.

Martin said he had no connection with Payne, except for the fact that they were both friends with Burke.

Carroll Investigators

The weapon was recovered in the pond by the State Police Dive Team and was given to Investigator Fred Bobbitt.

Snaps, buttons, clasps and a zipper was recovered from the burn pile. Bobbitt estimated that the burn pile was no more than a day or two old.

That night, Bobbitt noticed that the parkway was closed, but was unsure if it was closed Nov. 13.

Investigator Vinton Smith said he obtained the shotgun shells and a swab DNA test from Burke, but didn’t check Payne’s car for any DNA evidence because the police department felt that evidence could have been altered by that time.