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Burns sentencing for attempted kidnapping moved to Jan. 23

 
 
updated: 1/19/2018 4:19 PM

SALINE COUNTY -- The sentencing for a doctor found guilty on attempted kidnapping charges and who stands accused of murdering his wife has been moved to Jan. 23.

Dr. Brian Burns of Harrisburg originally was to be sentenced today, and a trial date on the murder charges was to be set following sentencing.

Now, the sentencing will be 10 a.m. on Jan. 23. Once sentenced, the murder case will be assigned a trial date.

Burns originally was arrested in March of 2016 on two charges of first-degree murder and one count of concealment of a homicidal death. He is accused of murdering his estranged wife Carla Burns, burning her body and then spreading the ashes on property they owned south of Harrisburg.

While incarcerated in the Saline County Detention Center in Harrisburg, Burns later was also charged with attempted kidnapping. He was charged with solicitation, conspiracy to commit aggravated kidnapping and attempted aggravated kidnapping. He was accused of trying to hire another inmate at the jail to kidnap then-State's Attorney Mike Henshaw so that Henshaw would drop the murder case against Burns. That information was relayed to authorities by the inmate.

Prosecutors moved to change the order of the trials so that the trial on the kidnapping charges would occur first. Henshaw had recused himself in the attempted kidnapping case. It was assigned to special prosecutor Matt Goetten of the Appellate Prosecutor's office in Springfield.

On March 22, 2017, Henshaw was found dead at his home. An autopsy revealed the cause of death to be a broken neck he sustained in a fall. Because of his role as state's attorney and former career as a judge, an investigation was undertaken to ensure foul play was not the cause. The cause of death was determined to be an accident.

In May, jurors found Burns guilty on all charges in the kidnapping trial.