Trial begins for East Tennessee man accused in Nikki Burgess’ murder

Caleb Cannon in court in Nashville on May 15, 2017. (Photo: WKRN)

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A jury was selected Monday and testimony began in the murder trial against Caleb Cannon.

Cannon is accused of killing the mother of his child, Nikki Burgess, in 2014. She was reported missing two days after the alleged crime took place by a friend who thought something was off.

Her remains have yet to be found, but detectives say dogs alerted to decomposition inside the bathtub of her home as well as the trunk of Cannon’s car. He was arrested for first-degree murder in October 2015 due to evidence collected by detectives.

Nikki Burgess
Nikki Burgess

Around 75 potential jurors were brought in Monday morning and the final jury was selected by mid-afternoon.

PHOTOS: The case of Nikki Burgess

Prosecutors then gave their opening argument just before 3 p.m. and first called one of Burgess’ best friends to the stand.

Stevie Lamoreaux spoke about how close the two were and how they were in constant communication with each other and texted usually every hour.

She also spoke about sending Burgess money because she was in a tough financial situation.

Burgess’ boyfriend, Jason Henry, also took the stand. The two had been dating for two or three months before she disappeared and planned to move in together.

Nikki Burgess
Nikki Burgess

He recounted what he saw when he went inside her home after she went missing.

“It was a disaster,” he said. “Not like someone just living in filth or not being good at keeping house, but things were just thrown everywhere. It was like if someone was… it was a disaster. Things were just thrown everywhere. It was in bad shape.”

The trail resumes Tuesday morning when Burgess’ son is expected to take the stand.

A former cellmate told investigators Cannon confessed to the murder sometime after his arrest and said he took her body to East Tennessee. Police previously said they believe money and custody of the couple’s son was the motive for the murder.

Click here to read more on Nikki Burgess’ case.