Son of murder victim and defendant testifies

NASHVILLE - The boy whose father is accused of killing his mother took the stand Tuesday in Nashville.

It's the second day of the murder trial for Caleb Cannon, who is charged with the murder of Nikki Burgess . The Nashville model who grew up in Cumberland County disappeared in May of 2014, and hasn't been seen since. Cannon is from Anderson County.

The boy, who is now 13 years old, was asked about the day his mother disappeared. The child's friend, who is also 13 years old, also testified.

Both said they smelled bleach inside the house and that Cannon told them they could not go into one of the bathrooms.

The state showed Cannon's son had initially lied during his first interview with the Nashville Children's Alliance in 2014. He said he lied at the time because "he was really scared and didn't want to get his father in trouble."

The son's friend testified that he saw Cannon leaving Burgess' house "struggling" to carry a large duffel bag before going to pick up his son at school. He also said that Cannon's son was "nervous" when they were playing together later that day.

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More than three years after a Nashville model disappeared, the father of her son is standing trial for her murder.

Nichole "Nikki" Burgess disappeared in May of 2014. She lived in Nashville, but grew up in Cumberland County. Her body has never been found.

Her ex-lover, Caleb Cannon, who is from Anderson County, is charged with first degree murder in her death. A jury was seated on Monday and opening arguments began.


Prosecutors maintain Burgess and Cannon had an estranged relationship.

Cannon was allowed to see their child every other weekend, but the state said “he had enough” and “he wanted to remove her from the equation.”

The state said a witness will tell the jury about two suspicious people carrying out what appeared to be dead weight in a large duffel bag.

Cannon’s defense attorney said there is no body, no cause of death and no manner of death. He added Metro police had tunnel vision while handling this case.

Investigators believe Cannon murdered Burgess at her Nashville home, then drove her body to an unknown location. Cadaver dogs alerted on the trunk of Cannon's car, according to search warrants.

Burgess was a pinup model in Nashville. Her friend filed a missing persons report after she didn't return any calls or texts. She said the last thing Burgess told her was that she was with Cannon.

The pair's son, who was 10-years-old at the time of Burgess' disappearance, told a friend that he might not be seeing his mom anymore because she is probably dead and was pretty sure that his dad had killed his mom, according to search warrants.

WSMV contributed to this report

 

 

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