Duke Southard

Author, Educator, Lecturer

Murder In a Small Town

This blog deals specifically with my work on the book, Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns.

4922, But Stacey Missed It

When the sun rose this morning, it began the 4,922nd day since Stacey Burns stopped seeing sunrises. The sunrise also marks 4,922 days since the New Hampshire State Police began their investigation into her vicious murder, which is now on the list of cold case homicides.

Recently I’ve been reading portions of my aborted book about this case to a group of writing colleagues here in Arizona. All agree that the work on that book should continue but I am stuck at the Arrest/Trial/Conviction chapters because those events haven’t happened and sadly show little chance of ever happening.

I wonder… Continue reading

Friday night? Saturday morning? 13 Plus Years Ago

As mentioned in recent post, I am reading portions of Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns to the Green Valley Writers Forum, a small group of professional and beginning writers who act as a critique group.

This week, I read the beginning of the chapter which describes what happened on Friday night and Saturday the weekend when Stacey Burns was stabbed to death. The group was struck, as I was at the time of my interviews back then, with the variations in the stories from different perspectives, even down to when a confrontation took… Continue reading

Nine years, Four Months

In May, 2013, the Stacey Burns murder story and my efforts to write a book about it was featured in a front page  article in our local paper out here in Arizona. At that time, I was immersed in writing  Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns. When that article appeared, it had been over four years since that crime ripped a family and community apart.

Now, it is nine years and four months since the article appeared. It seems to me that a legitimate question for the New Hampshire State Police might be,… Continue reading

Revisiting “Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns”

I have removed the manuscript of “Murder in a Small Town” from the desk drawer where it has resided since it seemed hopeless that the Arrest/Trial/Convictions chapters would ever be written.
I’ve begun sharing it with my Green Valley Writers Forum group. They are quite interested in it. I started at the beginning-Friday of the Mothers Day weekend when Stacey Burns was murdered.
Why would I do this? Probably because this unsolved atrocity and all the information I gathered is alway lurking just beneath the surface of my mind, and resurfaces at regular intervals. This Thursday, I’ll be reading to… Continue reading

Stacey Burns-Approaching 5000 Days

I know it has been a long time since I posted here about Stacey Burns, but it doesn’t mean I haven’t thought about that terrible tragedy often as have many of you, I’m sure.

It will soon be 5000 days since she was killed. I wonder how her killer views the approach of the that landmark since he stabbed a woman twenty-seven times, leaving her bloodied body entangled in a sheet at the side of her bed?

As he/she walks free, does the thought of the horror visited on her family that night ever creep in to that killer’s twisted… Continue reading

The Eight Party Line plus A Stacey Burns Response

Apparently, at least one other person, maybe two or three more, were interviewed in the spring by the detective working the Stacey Burns active (cold case) investigation. That would be about the same time I spoke with that same detective. Maybe there is some hope this terrible crime will be solved during the lifetime of people who lived through that ordeal as friends and family of Stacey. Can you imagine how many new cases are now in process in the eleven and and a half years since her murder?  I am still interested in hearing from anyone else who… Continue reading

Alibis Revisited

In reading through what I’ve written on Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns, I came across the chapter on alibis.  Here is the opening paragraph.

Chapter Thirteen (page 114)

“An earlier chapter of this book addressed the issue of “degrees of truth.” The concern raised in that section involved the fact that any human beings, whether eye-witness (primary) or hear-say witness (secondary), bring to an event a predetermined and unconscious mindset which colors their perception. Without any coaching on my part, friends of Stacey Burns indicated during their interviews that everyone had… Continue reading

Definition of Active

In June of 2013, I published a blog post here with my definition of the word, ACTIVE, as it applies to a murder investigation. In retrospect, it seems a bit harsh for the time. The reality is that seven years years had passed when in April of this year, a NHSP detective again used the word active to describe the Stacey Burns murder.  Is it a fair question to ask if my definition of active in 2013 is still viable today? Here is my definition back then. Readers may judge if it remains accurate.

June 2, 2013: “Active, in… Continue reading

Stacey Burns-Progress?

In my last post, I mentioned I would use this post to update readers on Murder in a Small Town: The Tragic Death of Stacey Burns. This will be a short post!

On April 6 of this year, I spoke with the detective who is currently working on the murder case of Stacey Burns about a tip I sent to the New Hampshire State Police in May of 2017. At the time I sent that tip to them, I thought it had some merit and thought for sure it should be followed up. (I still feel that way.)… Continue reading

Two Killers

This will be a brief post, followed by another tomorrow regarding those pesky ice dams referred to in the last post.

My question- is it safe to assume that the murderers of Stacey Burns and Bobbie Miller had gotten away with murder?

I ask that quite innocently because based on the circumstances (small towns, limited suspects) eleven years seems an inordinate amount of time to pass after the crimes were committed.



I'm Duke Southard, author, educator, and lecturer.

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