Thursday 24 October 2019

Murderer Molly Martens facing more jail time after breaching prison rules

Molly Martens Picture: Donnie Roberts/The Dispatch
Molly Martens Picture: Donnie Roberts/The Dispatch

Ralph Riegel

KILLER Molly Martens has been transferred back to a high-security US prison after being cited for three breaches of prison rules, two alone in the space of a couple of hours last month.

Martens (34), who is serving 20 to 25 years in North Carolina for the second-degree murder of her Irish husband Jason Corbett (39), was moved from Southern Correctional Institute to North Carolina Correctional Institute for Women (NCCIW) on May 31.

The NCCIW facility is home to other murderers, death row prisoners and criminals who pose a threat to both their fellow inmates and staff.

It is understood the transfer is directly linked to her repeated breaches of strict rules in Southern Correctional.

She now faces a major custody review on August 1, with the possibility of the parole board extending her prison term in light of her infractions.

The former nanny, who was convicted last August of the brutal murder of Mr Corbett, was cited for three separate prison rule breaches in the space of just 10 months.

The custody review will take place on the eve of the third anniversary of the murder.

Martens was cited for two breaches of rules in a high-security women’s prison on May 2.

The incidents happened just two weeks before Mr Corbett’s sister, Tracey Corbett-Lynch, who spearheaded the Justice For Jason campaign, published a book on her brother’s murder, entitled My Brother Jason.

Ms Corbett-Lynch wrote the book to defend her brother’s good name and reputation after she said he was the focus of “appalling lies and slanders” by Martens.

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety (NCDPS) has now revealed that Martens was moved from Southern Correctional back to NCCIW, the high-security prison outside Raleigh where she spent her first three weeks in custody after her murder conviction on August 9 last year.

Last month, Martens was cited for possession of “no threat contraband” and with “disobeying an order” from prison staff.

Jason Corbett with Molly Martens
Jason Corbett with Molly Martens

Both incidents happened on May 2 at Southern Correctional Institution, just south of Davidson County where she lived with her Limerick-born husband until his 2015 murder.

Martens had previously been cited for a breach of prison rules on November 21.

On that occasion she was found to have gone on “unauthorised leave”, though there was no question of her attempting to leave the prison itself.

Her breaches would be categorised as Class B and Class C breaches of the rules, which carry punishments such as:

  • Confinement in disciplinary segregation for up to 45 days.
  • Demotion from minimum to medium custody.
  • Loss of up to two privileges for a period not to exceed four months.
  • Loss of 30 days of sentence reduction credits, as applicable,
  • A major custody review, which could result in an increased sentence.

The former au pair is now appealing against her murder conviction and prison sentence to the North Carolina Court of Appeals.

Martens and her father, Thomas (67), a retired FBI agent, were both convicted last August of Mr Corbett’s murder.

Both received sentences of between 20 and 25 years, with a minimum of 20 years having to be served.

Molly Martens and her father Thomas Martens being led away from court in handcuffs Photo: Donnie Roberts
Molly Martens and her father Thomas Martens being led away from court in handcuffs Photo: Donnie Roberts

Mr Corbett was battered to death with a brick and a metal baseball bat in the master bedroom of the gated community home he shared with Martens, his second wife.

Davidson County Superior Court’s Judge David Lee rejected submissions last December for the two convictions to be quashed and a full retrial ordered.

Both the father and daughter had sought the retrial on the basis of what they claimed was juror misconduct.

Martens, whose inmate number is 1551729, was transferred to Southern Correctional Institute after being held briefly at NCCIW following her conviction.

After being cited last November for unauthorised leave, NCDPS files revealed that Martens had her scheduled release date extended.

While her father has a scheduled release date of August 3, 2037 – a minimum 20-year prison sentence – Martens had a scheduled release date of July 28, 2041, an increase of more than three years.

However, a custody review three months ago saw her release date changed to 2037.

Bizarrely, Martens has insisted she is officially referred to in prison as Molly Martens-Corbett, refusing to drop the use of her murdered husband’s surname.

Mr Corbett died from horrific head injuries sustained during a prolonged assault at the luxury home at Panther Creek Court he shared with his Tennessee-born wife.

Mr Corbett was pronounced dead at the scene and prosecutors claimed during the murder trial that the father and daughter faked CPR attempts and then deliberately delayed calling 911 to get help for the father-of-two.

It was also suggested that Mr Corbett may have been asleep and helpless in bed when he was first attacked.

During the second-degree murder trial, the father and daughter claimed they acted entirely in self-defence.

Molly Corbett leaves the Davidson County Courthouse in Lexington, North Carolina. Photo: Elise Manahan
Molly Corbett leaves the Davidson County Courthouse in Lexington, North Carolina. Photo: Elise Manahan

However, both were found to be totally uninjured at the scene.

In contrast, Mr Corbett’s skull had been crushed after he sustained a minimum of 12 blows from a metal baseball bat and a concrete garden paving brick.

His skull was so badly crushed that a pathologist could not determine the precise number of blows he had sustained.

It also emerged during the trial that traces of a powerful sedative, Trazodone, which had been prescribed to Martens three days before the killing, had been found in her husband’s system.

The Irishman was also said to be planning to return home to Limerick.

He lost his first wife and the mother of his two children, Margaret ‘Mags’ Fitzpatrick, to a tragic asthma attack when she was just 30.

He met Martens when she flew to Ireland to take up work as an nanny for Mr Corbett’s children.


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