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Molly and Tom Martens granted bail in North Carolina court

They were charged with second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter last night.

Molly Martens
Molly Martens
Image: Facebook

Updated 9.40pm

THE WIFE AND father-in-law of a Limerick man who was killed in his North Carolina home have been granted bail.

Last night, Davidson County Assistant District Attorney Greg Brown confirmed both Molly Martens Corbett and Thomas Michael Martens were to face charges of second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter following a grand jury indictment.

The pair today appeared in court charged over the killing and each had their bond set at $200,000 according to local reporter Darrick Ignasiak.

The condition of their bail is that they surrender their passports and agree to cease contact with the Irishman’s immediate family, specifically his two young children.

It comes today as Martens Corbett posted a message directed at the children on her Facebook page, telling them they are “my heart and soul, my sunshine and my happy”.

The Irishman’s death

Jason Corbett, 39, sustained fatal head injuries during an alleged assault in his North Carolina home on 2 August 2015. Shortly after the incident, police said they were not looking for any suspects outside the home, naming Molly and Tom as ‘persons of interest’.

In a call to emergency services, Tom – a retired FBI agent – said he hit his son-in-law with a baseball bat during a dispute. When paramedics arrived, Jason was unresponsive. He died later from his injuries.

‘Self defence’

Speaking to Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Molly’s uncle Mike Earnest insisted the father and daughter were acting in self defence.

Reading out a statement, he said:

“I have known Tom for 44 years and Molly since she was born 32 years ago. There are no finer people you would care to meet.

The actions of self defence that Tom and Molly took the morning of 2 August were completely necessary and justified.

“While the family is extremely disappointed in the grand jury’s action, we have complete faith in the justice system.

“Tom has dedicated his entire adult life to law enforcement and believes firmly in the sanctity of the justice system. Since the 911 call made that morning, both Tom and Molly have co-operated fully with the investigation and made themselves available every step of the way.

“They will both enter pleas of not guilty and once the events of 2 August are presented, they will be exonerated.”

Corbett’s first wife, and mother to Jack and Sarah, died from an asthma attack when the children were very young. Both of the children, who were present in the home during the incident on 2 August, now live in Ireland with family following a custody battle.

Jason was buried in Limerick.

Comments have been disabled because of ongoing legal proceedings. 

- With reporting by Michelle Hennessy.

More: Wife and father-in-law of Jason Corbett charged over his death

Related: Seeing Jack and Sarah being taken from Molly was ‘the most heart-wrenching scene’

Yesterday: Child in Islamic State execution video is my grandson, says London man

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