An Ogden man accused of raping and sexually assaulting several women in Utah and Wyoming over a 10-year span will be spending the rest of his life in prison.
Mark Douglas Burns, 69, was sentenced in Utah's 2nd District Court on Monday to 14 terms of 16 years to life and three terms of six years to life in prison -- at least 242 years. The terms are to be served consecutively.
"Your honor I’ve not committed a crime since 2010," Burns said at the hearing. "The reason I quit committing crimes is my mind started functioning differently than it ever had. I started experiencing emotions I never felt before. I started feeling guilt, shame and remorse."
Speaking about the victims of his heinous crimes, Burns said he wanted them to know that he is sorry.
"I find it hard to believe I was ever capable of doing that kind of crap to anybody," Burns said.
I realize that saying I’m sorry doesn’t fix what I did. Pleading guilty and going to prison doesn’t fix what I did, but it’s all I can do for them.
Burns pleaded guilty to 17 felony counts:
- Aggravated Sexual Assault – 8 counts
- Aggravated Kidnapping – 6 counts
- Aggravated Burglary – 2 counts
- Aggravated Robbery – 1 count
During the sentencing hearing, a letter from one of Burns' victims was read. She was just 11 years old when Burns reportedly abducted her from her family's home and raped her.
"In the middle of the night, I was really warm so I switched to sleeping on the floor because it would be cooler," the letter read. " The next thing I remember, I woke up and there was someone next to the sliding glass door. I thought it might be one of my parents, but I was confused as to why they would be over there... The guy put a knife against my neck and whispered not to scream, not to do anything."
"The day he was caught I felt a weight lift off my shoulders that I never realized was there because I was carrying it for so long," the letter continued.
I want Mark Burns to remember that you told me not to bother to tell anyone, that you would never be caught. I did it anyway because I am stronger than you... It may have taken 28 years, but you are here today. You were wrong.
- Ogden, Utah 1993
- Laramie, Wyoming 1996
- Layton, Utah 1997
- Clearfield, Utah 2000
- Clearfield, Utah 2001
- Riverdale City, Utah 1992
- Clearfield City, Utah 1994
- Clearfield City, Utah 1995
Burns may soon face additional charges in connection to Wyoming woman's death in 2001.