YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A New Castle man is back in Lawrence County after telling a judge in Youngstown that he wanted to go back to face his murder charges.
“Good morning” and “Yes, sir” were the only words that came from Keith Burley as he stood before a judge inside a Mahoning courtroom Thursday.
During court proceedings in Youngstown, Burley waived his right to an extradition hearing. Through his attorney, John McNally, he asked to be immediately returned to Pennsylvania, which the judge agreed to do.
Burley is accused of killing 8-year-old Mark Edward Mason, Jr. after a fight with the boy’s mother in New Castle.
Burley was arrested in Youngstown after he ran from a house in Union Township, where the stabbing happened.
A long-time friend of Burley’s was in the courtroom, watching it all play out.
“It’s sad man. Child lost his life, and then know that your friend, thinking that he got himself right, would have turned out to do something like this, really don’t sit well with me,” said Billy Greenawalt.
The Youngstown man said he has known Burley for more than 25 years — since before Burley was sent to prison in another murder case in New Castle in the late 90s.
Greenawalt said he has talked with Burley a number of times since he was released earlier this year.
“He’s got a job, and he’s working. He’s doing good, and then this happens,” he said.
Kyla Costa, of New Castle, said she dated Burley when both were teenagers, admitting that he has had problems.
“Honestly, I don’t condone anything that he did. It’s, it’s horrendous, horrendous, but there’s so many factors in this,” Costa said.
Costa said Burley has a mental illness and has gone off and on his medication.
Thursday afternoon, Burley was taken back to Pennsylvania, where he will be held without bond until a preliminary hearing next Thursday.