Corbett and Martens retrial for 2015 Davidson County murder case set for next year




  • In US
  • 2022-10-04 23:01:29Z
  • By The Dispatch
Molly Corbett and Thomas Martens
Molly Corbett and Thomas Martens  

The retrial of father and daughter, Thomas Martens and Molly Corbett, in the 2015 murder of an Irishman in Davidson County has been set for next year.

During an administrative pretrial meeting on Sept. 21, a judge in Davidson County Superior Court set a date to being jury selection on June 26, 2023.

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This will be the second murder trial for Corbett and Martens after the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld a ruling by the NC Court of Appeals that overturned their 2017 sentences.

Corbett and Martens were convicted in Davidson County with second-degree murder in the killing of Molly Corbett's husband and a native of Ireland, Jason Corbett.

Court documents state that in 2015, Martens, who is a former FBI agent, and his wife were visiting Jason and Molly Corbett and their children at their home in Davidson County. During the original trial, Martens said he was awakened by an argument between his daughter and son-in-law and went to their bedroom with an aluminum baseball bat, where he found Jason Corbett attacking his daughter.

During an altercation between Corbett, Molly Corbett and Martens, Jason Corbett was killed. The autopsy report said he died from blunt-force trauma to the head from a baseball bat and a garden paver.

A medical examiner testified that Jason Corbett had been hit in the head at least 12 different times and that his skull was crushed.

Martens and Molly Corbett said they acted in self-defense but were found guilty of second-degree murder in a 2017 court case in Davidson County Superior Court and sentenced to 25 years in prison.

More:Corbett and Martens granted new trial by NC Supreme Court

After they were convicted Martens and Corbett appealed the decision to the N.C. Court of Appeals, which overturned the lower courts' previous ruling.

In March 2021 the North Carolina Supreme Court agreed with the court of appeals and ruled that the court omitted "admissible testimony" in the original Corbett and Martens' trial, which could have changed the verdict. The Supreme Court ordered the case back to Davidson County for a retrial.

Court documents said that testimony of the couple's children about past abusive behavior and blood spatter analysis should have been allowed during the trial and that without it, Corbett and Martens didn't receive a fair trial.

Corbett and Martens were released on bail in April 2021, pending the new trial.

Because of the international attention, which has been closely followed by Irish and U.S. media, Judge David Hall, a Forsyth Superior Court judge assigned to the case, issued a gag order. This means all attorneys in the case cannot make public comments outside the courtroom. Staff members and expert witnesses are also prohibited from making any public comments to the media.

The judge has scheduled procedural hearings prior to the trial for November and January and pre-trial motions will be heard June 12, before jury selection begins on June 26.

This article originally appeared on The Dispatch: Corbett and Martens retrial for murder in Davidson County set for June

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