Former Playboy model and roommate jailed and charged for murder of 71-year-old psychiatrist
25-year-old Kelsey Nichole Turner and 30-year-old Diana Nicole Pena have been booked into a Las Vegas jail over the March murder of Thomas Burchard. Turner's boyfriend, also a suspect, remains at large
Two suspects, including a former Playboy model, have been booked into a jail in Las Vegas for the murder of a 71-year-old psychiatrist who was found rotting in the trunk of a car in a desert outside the city on March 31. The model's boyfriend, who is also a suspect, remains at large.
According to Daily Mail, 25-year-old Kelsey Nichole Turner, the model, and 30-year-old Diana Nicole Pena, a bartender, were arrested and jailed this past weekend. Turner had been apprehended in Stockton, California, on March 21, and was extradited to Nevada over the weekend while the circumstances surrounding Pena's arrest are still unclear.
Turner's boyfriend, 27-year-old Jon Logan Kennison, was with Turner when she was arrested but was not thought to be a suspect at the time. He has now gone underground, with authorities unsure of his whereabouts. All three have been charged with murder and conspiracy to murder for the death of 71-year-old Thomas Kirk Burchard.
Burchard's body was found in the trunk of a Mercedes-Benz C300 on March 7, with the Clark County coroner ruling the death a homicide after finding that the 71-year-old had been struck multiple times in the head and bore numerous defensive wounds.
Detectives found that the car was registered to Turner and also found fingerprints of all three suspects inside the vehicle, and while the motive for the murder was initially unclear, they believe Burchard was romantically involved with Turner, who was pregnant.
Burchard's longtime girlfriend Judy Earp revealed to The Californian that the psychiatrist had known Turner for about two years and that he had given her as much as $300,000 over that time frame for rent and other expenses.
Burchard had reportedly signed a lease for a home in Salinas where Turner lived with her mother and children but had stopped paying the rent in the months before his murder, prompting the 25-year-old to move to Las Vegas.
In Las Vegas, Turner was living with Pena and Kennison, who Burchard did not like, with an anonymous source revealing that the psychiatrist told him, "Kelsey is having trouble with her boyfriend out there in Vegas because he's hitting her. He's abusing her and she has no money, nowhere to go."
Police said Burchard traveled to Las Vegas on March 1 to visit Turner, which is when things began going south. The next day, the 71-year-old is said to have intervened to calm down a drunk woman who had shown up at the residence and started arguing with Turner, driving away with the woman to cool tempers. Kennison then became violent, punching a man who was at the residence while Burchard was away.
On March 3, Turner is said to have gotten together with Pena and Kennison and murdered Burchard at the home. All three then skipped town in the following days, though they left plenty of incriminating evidence behind. Police found extensive blood evidence throughout the house, with most of it concentrated around a mattress in an upstairs bedroom.
The attorney for Kelsey Turner said she pleaded not guilty to her charges during her court appearance this past Saturday, April 13.