Shoreline Park Man Shot To Death, Neighbor Charged With Murder

A Bay St. Louis man is out on bond after being charged with murder Thursday morning.

Michael Burks, 56, is accused of shooting Gary Joiner, 42, to death. The incident happened Wednesday night on Nassau Street in the Shoreline Park community.

Police say when Michael Burks pulled up to his trailer Wednesday night he was shocked at what he saw.

"He said he came home, saw an individual leaving out of his trailer. He then called dispatch and told them there was somebody leaving out of his trailer. He'd been burglarized," Interim Police Chief Tom Burleson said.

Investigators say Burks told them he was missing several items, including a gun. They say Burks then loaded a shotgun and went outside where he heard voices coming from the property across the street.

"He could hear voices, which was Gary and his wife arguing," Burleson said. "He come across, confronted Gary, and the next thing you know the gun went off."

Gary Joiner was struck.

"One single gunshot to the head," Burleson said.

Police say everyone involved knew each other, and had been acquaintances for five years.

A long time friend of Burks', Terry Bilbo. said Burks had intervened in domestic violence situations between Joiner and his wife Connie several times over the years.

"Every time he'd beat her, she'd call Mr. Mike and Mr. Mike would do what he can to pick her up, get her out of the situation. He'd do the best he can to help her," Bilbo told WLOX News. "I went with Mr. Mike the last time to pick her up. She had two black eyes, her mouth was all swollen out where he tried to knock her teeth out. It's just an abusive relationship."

Police booking records confirm that Joiner had been arrested twice for domestic violence, in 2004 and just a few months ago in May. In fact, Joiner went to court to face that charge Wednesday morning, but the case was dismissed because his wife Connie didn't show up.

"It's definitely a tragedy. It's unbelievable," Bilbo said.

Michael Burks is out on bond, but will be in court for a preliminary hearing September 5th.