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White man who ambushed ex in blackface with a shotgun to the head and 13 stab wounds amid custody battle over baby daughter is sentenced

Andrew Charles Beard, left, Alyssa Ann Burkett (Beard mugshot via Dallas County Jail; Burkett photo from obituary)

Andrew Charles Beard, left, Alyssa Ann Burkett (Beard mugshot via Carrollton Police Department; Burkett photo from obituary)

A man who disguised himself in blackface ambushed his ex-girlfriend where she worked, shot her in the head with a shotgun and when she didn’t die right away stabbed her 13 times, was sentenced to 43 years in federal prison in a case sparked amid a bitter custody battle.

Andrew Charles Beard, 36, was sentenced on Wednesday after pleading guilty to charges of cyberstalking using a dangerous weapon resulting in death and discharging a firearm during a crime of violence in the 2020 killing of Alyssa Ann Burkett, 24.

“This case is a sobering reminder of the brutal violence some women endure at the hands of their intimate partners. The victim, in this case, fought valiantly until the end. We hope today’s sentence brings a measure of peace to her family,” said U.S. Attorney Leigha Simonton in a news release.

His attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday evening.

In plea papers, Beard admitted he cyberstalked and murdered Burkett, 24, outside an apartment leasing office in the Dallas suburb of Carrollton, Texas, on Oct. 2, 2020, to gain custody of their young daughter, authorities said.

Burkett was so afraid Beard would kill her that she posted on a fundraising page about their custody battle to raise money for legal fees about a month before she was killed.

“At this point, I am scared for my life and my daughter’s life,” she wrote, according to Fox Dallas affiliate KDFW.

Beard admitted following her and tracking her from a GPS device on her car. He bought a black SUV for the occasion and donned a disguise, officials said.

He shot her in the head with a shotgun as she sat behind the wheel of her car before running back to the SUV, authorities said.

Burkett, severely injured and bloodied from the shotgun blast, managed to stagger out of her car and tried to enter a building for help.

Realizing that she was still alive, Beard got out of the SUV, ran up to her, grabbed her from behind and stabbed her 13 times through the upper body with a sharp object, officials said.

She died in the parking lot as he raced away.

Two witnesses described the killer as a Black man, the Dallas Morning News reported.

But Beard was the suspect. Burkett’s mother and co-workers told officers she feared Beard, believed he was tracking her and worried he would kill her. Burkett’s boyfriend told police Beard seemed “overly obsessed” with her and their daughter.

Beard was arrested as he drove away from his home in a white pickup truck three hours later. Authorities seized three phones, including a prepaid burner phone. On one phone, authorities said they found an internet search for “what is the best way to remove gunpowder residue from hands.”

In his vehicle, investigators found a pair of men’s hiking boots cut into pieces and soaking in bleach. In his home, authorities found a battery that matched the GPS trackers affixed to Burkett’s vehicle.

Authorities also found a script Beard used to phone in a false drug tip against Burkett a month earlier. Beard admitted he called in the fake tip on Sept. 2, 2020, after planting drugs and a gun in her car. He identified himself as “Frank Marrow,” claimed Burkett was selling drugs out of the trunk of her car and told police to check the spare tire well, officials said. A search of the tire well turned up drugs and a pistol with an obliterated serial number.

When questioned by police, Burkett vehemently denied selling drugs and told officers she believed Beard planted them, authorities said.

The day after the murder, police found the black SUV Beard drove to and from the murder scene abandoned near Beard’s home, authorities said.

Investigators also found evidence showing he had disguised his race — two bottles of liquid foundation makeup, partially burned wipes with brown residue, a burned metal cylinder consistent with a makeup brush container, and a dark prosthetic beard with apparent makeup on the inside.

The fake beard contained DNA that matched Beard, authorities said. Dried blood recovered from the vehicle contained DNA that matched Burkett, officials said.

Burkett was a loving mother with a good grasp on life and a bright future, her obituary said.

“Alyssa was strong-willed, ambitious, fiercely determined, and driven. She had many friends, and she was a natural leader among them. Alyssa was well-loved among her friends and family. Her presence will be deeply missed by everyone who knew and loved her.”

Law&Crime’s Alberto Luperon contributed to this report.

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