Huron, N.Y. -- After a preliminary trial, a Wayne County judge has ruled that the case against Dan Burkwit can move forward to a Grand Jury.
Burkwit is accused of murdering his mother, tying up her body in a blanket, and burying her body under leaves near the home they shared in Huron.
Rod Giffiords, an investigator who spoke with Burkwit shortly after the body as found, testified that Burkwit told him his mother had gone to church. Giffiords testified that Burkwit said that he had taken a nap and we he woke up he found her at the bottom of the stairs, tried CPR, heard a crack and "freaked out."
Thomas Walsh, an inmate in the Wayne County jail, said Burkwit told him everyday for almost a week that he felt badly about killing his mother, that they had an altercation and when she lost her balance and reached out, he jerked away, which led to her falling down the stairs.
"We allege that he caused her to go down the stairs by telling the inmate that, and it's consistent with his behavior afterwards," said Wayne County District Attorney Rick Healy.
"He made a statement in court that my client, if responsible in any way, shape or form, was jerking away and I don't think that meets the statutory requirements for reckless or negligent behavior," said Defense Attorney Sarah Wesley.
The defense also alleged that Burkwit was in shock when he buried his mother, and that the defendant has a history of mental illness.