YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Wednesday, the prosecution in the Gina Burger murder case asked for the initial hearing for suspect Ricki Williams to be continued, hoping to present the case to a grand jury Thursday.
Mahoning County Assistant Prosecutor Ken Cardinal said the prosecution will be presenting the case to a grand jury Thursday, hoping to indict Williams on a murder charge and pursue the death penalty. The grand jury’s approval is needed to add the possibility of the death penalty.
“We have every intention to seek a murder conviction and a death penalty specification if the grand jury sees fit to add that,” said Assistant Mahoning County Prosecutor Ken Cardinal.
The prosecution has ten days from the date of arrest to complete the preliminary hearing or receive a grand jury indictment. Friday will be the tenth day after Williams’ arrest.
If the grand jury does indict Williams, there will be no preliminary hearing Friday.
Police believe Williams fatally stabbed Burger at a Compass West apartment in Austintown June 23, then carried her body to a dumpster in a child’s crib, forcing a witness to help.
Workers at a landfill in Pine Township, Pa. discovered Burger’s body Wednesday, June 25. Various clues led police back to Williams, whom they arrested the evening of July 1.
Gina Burger’s mother, Jacqueline Bacher, was taken to the hospital the evening of July 1 after emergency workers believe she overdosed on heroin.