A jury has convicted a Flint man of attempted murder for shooting at a woman who was attempting to stop the man from beating his girlfriend.

On July 30, 2009, now 29-year Avern Lee Burnside, was driving a vehicle westbound on Court Street heading toward Miller and Corunna Roads when the driver of another vehicle saw him pulling on his female passenger's hair and beating her.

The witness then pulled alongside his vehicle and yelled at him to stop it. The witness continued driving westbound on Court when Burnside then sped up to her vehicle and pulled alongside it and fired a gun at her car just missing the gas tank. The witness was able to get the license plate number and called 911. Police were able to determine the driver was Burnside and he was arrested and charged a few months later with five felonies.

Burnside was convicted as charged on all five counts including: assault with intent to murder, carrying a concealed weapon, felon in possession, discharge of a firearm in a vehicle and felony firearm.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said "this is an example of a good citizen putting her own safety at risk in order to protect another person who was being victimized in a vicious cycle of domestic violence." He added "I cannot commend the victim in this case enough for coming forward and doing the right thing. There is no doubt our community is safer today thanks to her heroic efforts."

Burnside will be sentenced as a four-time habitual offender on March 28th and face the possibility of life in prison.


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