Saturday 16 December 2017

'Jason was never violent, he was a gentle giant' - former sister-in-law

The late Jason Corbett with his second wife, Molly Martens. Photo: Brendan Gleeson
The late Jason Corbett with his second wife, Molly Martens. Photo: Brendan Gleeson

The sister of Jason Corbett's first wife has jumped to the slain Irishman's defence, saying he was not a violent person.

It comes after his second wife, Molly Martens Corbett, and her father, Thomas Martens, claimed that they were acting in self-defence on the night he was killed.

However, Catherine Fitzpatrick - whose sister Mags was married to Mr Corbett before she died from an asthma attack in 2006 - maintains that he would not have been a domestic abuser.

"I don't believe that he put his hands on her [Molly]. He wasn't that type of guy. He wouldn't raise his voice at anyone," she said.

"The evidence shows that there were no marks on her and no marks on Thomas either. I cannot believe that they were saying it," she added.

Ms Fitzpatrick said that she lived with Mr Corbett for more than a year, and helped him care for the couple's children - Jack (11) and Sarah (9) - after Mags died.

"I would have known if he was violent. Mags would have told me, too, because we were very close, so there is no way that he was like that," she said.

"Mags and Jason moved in with me when they were building their house. Then I moved in with them in March 2006 while I was getting ready to buy my own house.

"I lived with him for more than a year, so I knew what Jason was like. He was a gentle giant."


Mr Corbett moved to the US in 2011, where he married Molly Martens Corbett.

He was found dead with severe head injuries at his home in August last year after his father-in-law, Thomas Martens (65), struck Mr Corbett with a baseball bat.

Mr Martens told officers responding to a 911 call that Mr Corbett was strangling his daughter before he intervened.

However, both have now been charged with second- degree murder and voluntary manslaughter.

"I listened to the 911 call and I am sorry that I did because they sound so cold in it," said Ms Fitzpatrick. "There has never been an apology and it is just awful," she added.

A trial may not be held until 2017, as prosecutors build a case.

"For the Corbetts, and his parents especially, they need to grieve, but will not be able to until some kind of justice is served.

"They have gone through stages of being angry, but I think that they have been very dignified about everything," added Ms Fitzpatrick.

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