Ex-cop dies in prison custody

Dec. 02, 2013 @ 04:31 PM

In mid-November, Durham murder suspect Timothy Burns was moved to the state’s Central Prison complex in Raleigh under a safekeeping order.

On Saturday, the former Durham police officer died at a Rex Medical Center in Raleigh.
It’s not clear yet whether Burns, who reportedly tried to commit suicide after police say he stabbed his wife, Maxine, to death, succumbed to those injuries or if something else caused his death.
“There’s very little I’m able to release,” said Pamela Walker, communications director for the N.C. Department of Public Safety.
She noted that safekeeping orders can be issued for medical or mental health reasons. Burns, 51, was at the prison until Nov. 26, she said, at which time he was transferred to Rex Healthcare. He died on Nov. 30.
Deputy Paul Sherwin of the Durham County Sheriff’s Office said that Burns was taken to Central Prison shortly after booking in the Durham jail “because he required medical care that we could not accommodate.”
Burns had been charged with killing his 50-year-old wife on Nov. 8 in their home on Cedarwood Drive in Forestview Heights. No motive or further details about that crime have been publicly released.
Records indicate that he was hired by the police department in 1984 and retired on May 1, 2000.
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