By Alexis R. Milan Staff Reporter
A San Ignacio man has been remanded to prison for the murder of his girlfriend, 24-year-old Kayla Burgess.
Twenty-one-year- old Vinnie Garbutt was arraigned before Magistrate Nardia Morgan on Monday on a single charge of murder.
Due to the nature of the charge, no plea was taken and Garbutt was remanded to prison until his next court date on June 24th.
Last Thursday, the Burgess’ family in Independence Village received a text message from her phone demanding a ransom of $250,000 in exchange for her life.
After learning that Kayla was possibly somewhere in the Cayo district, her family alerted police and a subsequent search led to the discovery of Kayla Burgess dead from suffocation inside her Kia Sorento on Bullet Tree Road.
Police found her with a plastic bag over her face and a plastic tightener strapped around her neck.
The investigation led police to Vinnie Garbutt who was found with the keys to Burgess’ vehicle. He had scratch marks all over his body, as well as a bloody towel and a bloody pair of slippers at his home.
Garbutt apparently fabricated the kidnapping story, after Kayla Burgess had been killed.
San Ignacio police picked up Garbutt along with his 18-year-old roommate, Faith Dueck.
Dueck’s attorney, Audrey Matura-Shepherd, said via press release that her client was as much a victim as the deceased in the matter.
According to the release from Matura-Shepherd, “To Faith, it was not unusual to see Vinnie with Kayla’s vehicle or to learn that he dropped off Kayla or picked her up somewhere or even had to take the vehicle for Kayla somewhere.
“Thus seeing him with the vehicle that Thursday did not set off any alarm bells to her.”
Faith Dueck was detained for 48-hours then released after giving a statement.