Jason Corbett case ‘in good shape’, says US sheriff

File to be passed to district attorney to decide if criminal charges will be brought

Jason Corbett, who was found on Sunday, August 2nd, with fatal head injuries at the North Carolina home he shared with his second wife, Molly Martens.

Jason Corbett, who was found on Sunday, August 2nd, with fatal head injuries at the North Carolina home he shared with his second wife, Molly Martens.

 

The US sheriff investigating the death of a Limerick man in North Carolina said he is close to passing the case on to the local district attorney to decide whether criminal charges should be brought.

Sheriff David Grice, of Davidson County, told The Irish Times the investigation into the death of Jason Corbett (39) at his home in Wallburg near Winston-Salem was “in good shape”.

Police were awaiting background information ahead of re-interviewing a number of people, he said, before sending the case to the district attorney, Gary Frank, who will consider criminal charges.

He declined to say when the file would be handed over.

“It takes time to locate and talk to people. It takes time to obviously get it written up and co-ordinate with different investigators.

“We have at least three people actively working on it every day,” he said.

Early on Sunday, August 2nd, Mr Corbett was found with fatal head injuries at a home he shared with his second wife, Molly Martens, and his two children from a first marriage, Jack (10) and Sarah (8).

Police were called to the house at Panther Creek Court, at 3.04am, in response to a domestic disturbance. The 911 dispatcher was told by a “complainant in the call” – Mr Corbett’s father-in-law, Thomas Martens, a retired FBI agent – that “he had been in an argument with his son-in-law and that he had struck him with a baseball bat”, according to the police incident report.

Investigators

The sheriff said investigators had found nothing to contradict that initial report. Ms Martens and her father were still persons of interest in the investigation, he said. No formal arrests have been made.

A suggestion has been made that Mr Martens may have been acting in a form of defence.

The sheriff said the investigation would not be influenced by the personal involvement of a law-enforcement agent.

“I do not hold sway over the FBI, the FBI does not hold sway over me,” said Mr Grice, a locally elected law-enforcement official.

He insisted his office’s investigation would be thorough.

“I want to reassure people in Ireland the victim’s interest is very much the main focus,” he said. “If there is something that rises to the level of a crime, we are certainly going to be diligent and vigorously prosecute.”

Mr Corbett was buried in Limerick on Wednesday beside his first wife, Mags, who died from an asthma attack. His two children returned to Ireland last weekend after their paternal aunt, Tracey Lynch, won a US custody battle with Ms Martens.