(LAS VEGAS, KXNT)–The man Metro Police cold case detectives say is a serial killer is due back in court Monday morning for arraignment in the deaths of three women, the first of which was killed 34 years ago.
Nathaniel Burkett, now 63 years old, may learn a scheduled trial date in a case in which prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty. Burkett is accused of strangling the women, who were subsequently found in areas not far from where Burkett was living near downtown Las Vegas at the time.
Detectives reviewing evidence in the case in 2012 located Burkett in Mississippi. He was imprisoned for manslaughter there in the 1980’s and did time for manslaughter in the death of a Clark County woman in the 1990’s.
Burkett was suspected since the discovery of the first victim in the summer of 1978. Barbara Cox, 22, was found in an alleyway. Burkett’s ex-girlfriend told police she had seen a woman’s body in Burkett’s apartment as she drove him home from work one morning. But there was confusion about the correct address of the apartment, and an unproductive police interview with Burkett left the case hanging. Police, however, preserved DNA evidence, including that of a second victim, in 1994. Detectives say in late 2011, they matched Burkett’s DNA with that of a victim, and began the process of locating him to file murder charges.