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UPDATE: Suspect in Burger killing has criminal history

Published: Tue, July 1, 2014 @ 10:54 p.m.




Authorities have arrested a Youngstown man in the slaying of 16-year-old Gina Burger.

Austintown police said U.S. Marshals arrested Ricki D. Williams IV, 18, at about 6 p.m. today on Lakeview Avenue on Youngstown’s West Side. He has been charged with aggravated murder and kidnapping and was transported to the Mahoning County jail.

He is to be arraigned in Mahoning County Area Court here at 9 a.m. Wednesday, township officials said.

Austintown Police Chief Robert Gavalier said tonight that more charges could be filed, but there were no other suspects so far.

He did say, however, that Williams has a criminal history, including an arrest for aggravated assault.

County Assistant Prosecutor Ken Cardinal said authorities will likely file the charges between 8:30 and 9:30 a.m. Wednesday.

“Police reasonably believe, and have just cause to believe, they have the right person who is responsible for that death,” Cardinal said.

Gavalier said there was no address available for Williams, who he said is homeless and had been staying with friends for a week or two at a time.

He also said that he believes Burger was killed the night of June 23, the same day she disappeared from Compass West Apartments.

“He held her against her will at the Compass West Apartments and she was murdered at Compass West Apartments with a knife. We do not have a knife at this time,” the chief said.

He added details on how her body ended up at Tri-County Industries in Grove City, Pa., on June 25 will come later. Police have said the Compass West Apartments, as well as sections of Austintown and Youngstown have their trash delivered to the landfill, which services nine counties.

The chief said Williams and Burger “definitely knew each other.”

Authorities are still waiting for evidence that was submitted Monday and today to be processed by the Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

Police identified Burger as the victim Friday, and multiple detectives were at the apartment complex June 26 where she was last seen. They had removed a piece of wall and two parts of a railing at that time from the building where she was staying before she was identified as the victim.


176Ytown(1318 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Pure evil exists among us.

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2AJ88(1 comment)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

You know this is a very sad thing that has happened to Gina. I was able to get to know her she was very sweet and loving I know this is a very hard time for all of her love ones. What this guy did to her is unforgivable and he is going to answer for what he has done to a higher power no matter what he is giving down here.

JUSTICE50 I find a lot of your post to full of a lot of hate against many of people. Everything that comes to our head should be spoken or written. I was born and raised in Youngstown so I am guessing I would be as you say a "Youngstowner" and I have never hurt anyone killed anyone or even robbed anyone, it is not where you are from or how you are raised it about the choice we make in life. So yes I find myself agreeing with some of the things you have wrote because what he did is horrible but some of it could have been left out. The fact of the matter is that Gina (someone baby girl) is gone it is sad and heart breaking. I am grateful that they have found the person who did this to you Gina.

76Ytown I could not agree with you anymore Pure Evil Exist Among Us. All around us.

RIH Gina Burger (Sweet Angel) You are already truly missed.

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3kw27(30 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This is disgusting! I just seen a video on the news where the police were arresting this punk. As the police car was pulling away, he was in the back seat of the cruiser smiling and giving a hand gesture to the camera as the cruiser pulled away. What a smug b*stard!

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4DACOUNTRYBOY(726 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

There is a name for this boy that explains his actions. PREDATOR. Just as in the animal world getting their fill is not enough. They destroy life for the thrill of it. In Gina's case it was all about power and control. Predators also gain power by numbers by joining with others. They find easy and trusting victims in the projects.

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5republicanRick(1542 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Lack of family values doomed this boy. This boy is a predator, agreed.

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6georgejeanie(1187 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Please if they accelerate the death penalty the lawyers will not make as much money. Think about thr longer they can prolong these death sentences the more money the make

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