Sunday, April 14, 2024

Police: Accused Murderer Bites Corrections Officer in Food Tray Dispute

William E. Burks (Photo courtesy Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail)
William E. Burks (Photo courtesy Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail)

A 29-year-old Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail inmate accused of second-degree murder has been charged with attacking a corrections officer while in a jail pod.

Deputy Chief Steve Rubino of the James City County Police Department said William Edward Burks Jr. and the corrections officer had a dispute over Burks’ tray of food around 5:20 p.m. July 19.

Rubino said the confrontation became physical and Burks bit the guard’s hand, put his arm around his neck and started strangling him. At one point, Burks was swinging the food tray around, Rubino said.

While the guard was on the ground, several officers had to break up the fight and restrain Burks, Rubino said.

The officer suffered minor injuries.

Burks is charged with misdemeanor assault and battery on a corrections officer, felony maiming and felony strangulation for the July 19 incident.

Burks, who entered a not guilty plea in February in the shooting death of Devon Coates last year, has been in jail since his arrest June 25, 2013.

He will face a jury trial 9 a.m. Sept. 27 in York County Poquoson Circuit Court for charges related to the homicide.

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