Burham pleads guilty to kidnapping, escape charges

Times Observer photo by Josh Cotton Pictured is Michael Burham being led for two preliminary hearings, centered around kidnapping charges against an elderly Mead Township couple and escape from the Warren County Jail.

Michael Burham, who escaped from Warren County Jail over the summer and the prime suspect in a Jamestown homicide case, pleaded guilty this afternoon to charges of kidnapping, recklessly endangering another person, terroristic threats, theft and burglary.

Burham also pleaded guilty to a single count of escape during his appearance in Warren County Court.

He’s still expected to faces charges yet to be announced in Chautauqua County

Burham had been facing a total of 35 charges in Pennsylvania, including 17 felonies, ranging from kidnapping to burglary to escape. A total of 33 charges were from his alleged kidnapping of a Sheffield couple in May. He had been on the run for over a week in the wake of a Jamestown police investigation into a homicide.

Burham allegedly staked a couple’s residence in Sheffield before taking them — and their car — to Charleston, S.C. He was subsequently apprehended there and brought back to the Warren County Jail to face the kidnapping charges. That’s when he escaped in July, precipitating a manhunt that brought national and international attention to Warren County.

Burham will be facing murder charges in connection to the May death of Kala Hodgkin, 34, inside her William Street home in Jamestown.

No charges have been announced by the Chautauqua County District Attorney’s Office as of Wednesday.


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