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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Northern US

    MO - Rhonda Burgess, 22, murdered, St Joseph, 28 Nov 1991

    Ex-Husband, Mother-In-Law of Woman Missing 23 Years Accused of Murder

    ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) -- A man and his mother were charged with murder Thursday in the death more than 23 years ago of his former wife.

    Michael E. Milbourn Sr., 44, and his mother, Shirley A. Milbourn, 66, both of St. Joseph, were charged in Buchanan County with the second-degree murder of Rhonda Burgess, who was 22 when she disappeared. Both were being held on bonds of $250,000.


    On Friday, officials said they found Burgess' remains on farmland in a neighboring county. They believe she was buried there after being shot to death in late November 1981, and said an anonymous tip led them to the burial site.


    Wonder where the child is that the woman had??
    I wonder who raised the baby and what reason they
    gave for the mother not being there...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2004

    DNA id's bones of Rhonda Lou Burgess; Shirley&Michael Milbourn Sr guilty

    Jackson County medical examiners spent Saturday trying to confirm the identity of skeletal remains unearthed Friday from an Andrew County, Mo., field.

    Investigators think the bones are those of Rhonda Lou Burgess, a 22-year-old St. Joseph woman who police think was murdered and buried in the field 23 years ago.

    Last edited by Salem; 11-05-2010 at 01:00 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Does anyone know what ever came of the testing?

  4. #4
    Body Of Woman Missing For 23 Years Found
    Woman's Ex-Husband, Mother-In-Law Charged With Murder
    Just the facts, Ma'am.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Judge Dan Kellog had no sympathy for either Shirley Milbourn nor her son Michael, sentencing both to the maximum allowed under their plea agreements.

    For 67 year old Shirley, that means spending the next 24 years in prison. She was sentenced to 30, but is only required to serve 80% of that term.
    Her son michael, who pled guilty to tampering with evidence and disposing of a corpse, was sentenced to 8 years behind bars.

    Shirley Milbourn broke down as Judge Dan Kellog told her she`d likely spend the rest of her life behind bars.

    Speaking on behalf the Burgess family, Rhonda`s sister in law described wondering about Rhonda for the last 24 years, only to find out now that Shirley shot her in the stomach with a shotgun, before Michael helped stuff her body in a cardboard box and buried her.

    Shirley made no argument in her defense, taking the opportunity to apologize.

    Michael Milbourn also took the stand, saying only, "I want to apologize to the Burgess family, and my son."

    His attorney argued that he was young, only 20 years old at the time of the murder, and that given his lack of life experience, his crime was indefensible but understandable.

    Shirley`s attorney`s claimed that the killing was an accident, and noted that Shirley has lived a crime free life since the murder.

    The prosecutor and the Judge disagreed, saying Michael`s crime was indefensible but in no way understandable, and that Shirley should be punished harshly both for her crime and as a deterrent for other members of the community.

    The Burgess family packed the courtroom today and say they can finally breathe a sigh of relief.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    I wonder what the motive was for this? Also wonder what happened to their child. There has to be more to this story than we can learn from these news articles.

  7. #7
    SewingDeb's Avatar
    SewingDeb is offline "Sorry, I'm not qualified to land the plane."
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Since he apologized to her family and to his son, I would say the child survived and is a grown man now.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    On the Third Coast



    A man and his mother have admitted guilt to charges in the death 24 years ago of his former wife, a crime that went unsolved until a tip led to discovery of the body in May.

    Appearing Thursday in Buchanan County Circuit Court, Shirley Milbourn, 67, said she shot Rhonda Burgess during an argument in November 1981, and her son, Michael Milbourn Sr., 44, said he mopped up the blood and hid the body.

    Shirley Milbourn pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. A second-degree murder charge against her son was dropped in return for his guilty plea to abandoning a corpse and tampering with physical evidence. Prosecutors also agreed not to file additional charges against either of them.

    more at link
    "Don't forget the kangaroo!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    I know this thread is really old....but I woke up in the middle of the night thinking about this case for some reason.

    I went to college with the son. He was raised by his grandma (the one convicted of killing his mother) and grandpa. His father was pretty absent from what I can remember. I really liked the guy, he was smart, funny, and seemed to be pretty well-adjusted for having an absent mother and father. He was very polite-- one of those people you could tell who was raised to have manners and be respectful.

    I wasn't super close to the guy or anything and I have not spoken to him in years but he did tell me (before all of this happened) a bit about his family dynamics as he saw them. I truly wonder if his mother came in his grandparents' home and tried to take him (as a baby) away and was killed by the grandmother.

  10. #10
    Shirley Milbourn is my grandmother, I am the one that went to the police and provided ALL of the evidence resulting in the closing of the cold case...but there is more to the story...

  11. #11
    There was more than one child

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    New York, United States
    Where is the other child?

  13. #13

    Ponder this

    Shirley was released on parole on 4/13/2015.

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