Sunday 22 October 2017

Date set for trial of woman charged with murdering Irish husband Jason Corbett

Jason Corbett and Molly Martens on their wedding day (Inset above: Molly Martens' photo taken after arrest; inset below: Molly Martens' father Tom)
Jason Corbett and Molly Martens on their wedding day (Inset above: Molly Martens' photo taken after arrest; inset below: Molly Martens' father Tom)
Molly Martens with her late husband, Jason Corbett.

John Breslin

A date has been set for the start of the murder trial of the wife and father in law of Limerick man Jason Corbett, found beaten to death in his home in North Carolina.

Molly Martens Corbett and her father, former FBI agent Thomas Martens, are each accused of second degree murder and voluntary manslaughter over the death of the 39-year-old businessman on August 2, 2015.

The trial is due to start July 17. A hearing on pre-trial motions will  be held June 9, according to the clerk of court's office in Davidson County, North Carolina. It is possible a plea deal will be crafted ahead of the trial.

Mr Corbett was found beaten to death at the couple's home in the Meadowlands golf course community near Winston-Salem. His two children from a previous marriage lived with the couple. His first wife, Margaret, died in 2006 following an asthma attack.

Molly Martens Corbett pleaded not guilty to murdering her husband Jason Corbett
Molly Martens Corbett pleaded not guilty to murdering her husband Jason Corbett

Following his death, the two children, were at the centre of a custody battle between Martens Corbett and her late husband's family in Limerick. Corbett's sister Tracey, and her husband David, were granted custody of the children  by a North Carolina court, and they now live in Ireland.

Corbett died from blunt force trauma, and was found by an autopsy to have suffered multiple fractures and cuts to his head. Investigators believe he was hit a number of times with a baseball bat and a  paving stone.

Court papers also give some indication of the defence case. Thomas Martens told police he struck his son-in-law because the Irishman was choking his daughter.

The court papers also suggest the marriage was in trouble. Jason Corbett wanted to return to Ireland with his two children, but his wife, who had become tremendously emotionally attached to the the kids, wanted them to remain, according to the documents. She wanted to formally adopt the children.

Thomas Martens
Thomas Martens

Corbett met his future wife in 2008 when the American moved to Ireland to work as an au pair for the children. He and the children later moved to the US and the couple married in 2011.

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