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By Kim Harris and Julie Reeder
Village Staff 

Authorities converge on Fallbrook property where dead body of Murrieta man was found

 

Last updated 8/3/2021 at 3:54pm

Village News/Tony Campbell photo

San Diego County Sheriff's Department K-9 Officer Phil gives his search and rescue cadaver dog a drink of water from his Camelback after investigating a property in Fallbrook Tuesday, Aug. 3. Village News/Tony Campbell photo

Authorities converged on a Fallbrook property Tuesday, Aug. 3, where the body of 56-year-old Robert Berry Pierce (also known as Bobby Berry Pierce), believed to be from Murrieta, was found July 14.

Nicholas "Nick" Burg, age 29, who lived at the property, was taken into custody Friday, July 16, by the San Diego County Sheriff's Department on suspicion of murder in the first degree after the discovery of the Pierce's remains. Burg was on a 5150 mental health hold in the days leading up to his arrest.

San Diego County Sheriff's Department officers, along with search and rescue cadaver dogs were at the property in the 400 block of Ridge Drive investigating a tip that there were more bodies buried on the property, though none were found.

San Diego County Sheriff's Department Homicide Detective Lt. Thomas Seiver, who was on the scene, said that his department heard that there could potentially be more bodies buried at the location and it was their duty to investigate the tips.

"Anytime anyone buries a body and we have information from the community, we had information from the community that indicated enough to us to compel us to come out and see if the allegations were true," Seiver said. "You can't just let those lay. If you dig one up, the possibility of another one is not too far fetched."

Investigators used three cadaver dogs, heavy equipment, sonar and other means to conduct their investigation at the property.

"We came out this morning to serve a search warrant on the property to look for more evidence and determine if there are any more bodies," Seiver said. "There were community concerns about there being more bodies on the property."

Seiver said the sheriff's department had a construction company come out and "do a couple digs" on the property.

"We had our search and rescue cadaver dogs and ground penetrating radar that we utilized and so we utilized all those devices, we searched the property and took the evidence that we needed to take, but there were no additional bodies found," he said.

Anonymous information regarding more bodies as well as an acid tank located on the property was given to Village News and Tony Campbell of AC Investigations, but according to Seiver, no evidence was found of an acid tank or more bodies.

"... I know there were community concerns about acid tanks and all that but it was just community talk," Seiver said.

According to Seiver, the investigation is ongoing.

"The investigation isn't over so we can't comment on what we are doing," he said. "We wanted to get the word out to Facebook and everybody that there is no evidence of additional murders or bodies."

Village News/Julie Reeder photo

San Diego County Sheriff's Department Homicide Lt. Thomas Seiver and Private Investigator Tony Campbell of AC Investigations talk following a press briefing at the property in the 400 block of Ridge Drive where investigators searched for more bodies Tuesday, Aug. 3.

Seiver said they were still looking at the connection between the two men.

"We are still investigating what the relationship is between Burg and the deceased," he said.

In the complaint against Burg, Prosecutors allege that Pierce was killed July 12 or 13, according to court records.

Burg, who pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, Wednesday, July 21, is not eligible for release or bail and is being held in the Vista Detention Facility. He faces 33 years to life if convicted of all charges, which, in addition to the charge of murder in the first degree include felony vehicle theft, felony possession of a stolen vehicle, and a misdemeanor shoplifting charge, according to court records.

Anyone with information about the incident should call the San Diego County Sheriff's Department Homicide Unit at (858) 285-6330, after-hours at (858) 565-5200 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

Tony Campbell of AC Investigations contributed to this story.

 

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