Two Wellsville men sentenced to state prison in Nicholas Burdge's 2020 killing

Brandon Poehmel pleads guilty to manslaughter, bringing total case pleas to 6

Neal Simon
The Evening Tribune

Two Wellsville men are headed to state prison for their roles in last year’s brutal beating death of 23-year-old Nicholas A. Burdge.

Eight people were charged in the killing, which prosecutors say took place over the course of hours while Burdge was tied to a chair.

Sentenced by Allegany County Court Judge Thomas P. Brown on Wednesday were:

  • Dylan L. Coomer, 27, was sentenced to 16 years in state prison and four years post-release supervision. Coomer pleaded guilty Jan. 13, 2021 to first-degree manslaughter.
  • Lawrence C. Haxton III, 36, was sentenced to 10 years in state prison and five years post-release supervision. Haxton pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter Jan. 13, 2021.

Meanwhile, Brandon Poehmel, 21, of Wellsville, pleaded guilty Tuesday to first-degree manslaughter. Poehmel will be sentenced next month, the Allegany County District Attorney’s Office said.

A file photo shows New York State Police monitoring the entrance to Jack Bridge in the Town of Willing last year after the discovery of a body at the edge of the Genesee River. Nicholas A. Burdge, 23, of Wellsville, was later identified as the deceased in the 2020 murder.

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Authorities described the March 2020 attack on Burdge as a brutal assault with the victim sustaining multiple injuries from both blunt force and sharp force trauma. Investigators said Burdge was restrained in a chair at his Wellsville residence during the attack. Police said the assailants then dumped Burdge’s body in the Genesee River.

The victim's body was discovered off the river edge near Jack Bridge in the Town of Willing, wrapped in a sheet and plastic garbage bags, according to police reports.

A total of five defendants pleaded guilty in January to charges connected to the killing.

In addition to Coomer and Haxton, Richelle L. Kyser, 28, of Wellsville entered an “Alford Plea” to one count of second-degree attempted gang assault, while Kristopher Delill, 38, of Wellsville pleaded guilty to second-degree assault.

Under the Alford plea, Kyser denies the accusation but concedes that prosecutors have sufficient evidence to convict her on the felony charge. 

While Kyser and Delill were slated to be sentenced Wednesday, their cases were adjourned, the district attorney's office said. New sentencing dates were not released.

An 18-year-old youthful offender who was 17 at the time of the offense pleaded guilty to third-degree assault, a misdemeanor, in January. Sentencing information for the youth has not been released.

Two cases remain pending.

Howard M. Burroughs, 41, of Wellsville has pleaded not guilty to all charges, including to second-degree murder, second-degree kidnapping, first-degree manslaughter, first-degree gang assault and first-degree kidnapping. No information was available on Burroughs’ next court appearance.

The court said a new attorney has also been appointed for a a second youthful offender, age 17, who was charged in the case.