Grandmother of Jason Corbett's children says his killers are "not human beings"

Marian Fitzpatrick described the murdered Irish man as a "gentle giant"

Grandmother of Jason Corbett's children says his killers are "not human beings"

Undated file photo of Jason Corbett

The grandmother of Jason Corbett's children says his murder was "despicable".

The 39-year-old Irish man was beaten to death with a baseball bat and paving stone at his home in North Carolina two years ago.

Jason's second wife Molly Martens and her father Thomas Martens were yesterday sentenced to between 20 and 25 years in prison for Jason's murder.

It came after a jury found them guilty of second degree murder.

Marian Fitzpatrick is the grandmother of Jason Corbett's children, Jack and Sarah. Her daughter Margaret (Mags) - Jason's first wife - died of an asthma attack in 2006.

Marian spoke to Newstalk Breakfast in the wake of yesterday's verdict and sentencing.

On the subject of Molly and Thomas Martens, Marian suggested: "I don't think anything of them. They are not human beings.

"What they done to Jason... it was despicable, and you wouldn't have done it to an animal."

An emotional statement by Jack Corbett (13) was read out in court yesterday, in which he said he and his sister had lost a "kind, loving and adoring father".

He wrote: “[Molly Martens] will always be remembered as the person who killed her husband for no reason."

Marian spoke about the impact of Jason's murder on her grandchildren, and her own daughter's life with her family. 

She said: "[Jack] lost his mom when he was very young, and now his dad is gone. It's just devastating, and it's upsetting. But he's with a good family, and he is thriving, and they are very happy.

"Jason and Mags were soulmates. They were so happy, they had such a good life. When they had the kids they had such a good life."

"Gentle giant"

Marian described Jason as a 'gentle giant', and someone who had lots of time for his family.

"He liked the craic," she recalled. "He was so thoughtful - he even paid for us to go over to America to see them. He came one Christmas to surprise us - we didn't even know he was coming. He knocked at the door, and there he was with the two kids.

"He was a real family man. He worked hard. He done everything he could for his family, and they had a fantastic life - Mags and Jason - for the time they were together."

Marian met Molly Martens on a number of occasions while she was married to Jason. 

She observed: "She was alright... she was a bit strict. She wouldn't be like Irish mammys. But they seemed to be doing fine. They had a beautiful home out there, and the kids were making friends... I felt a little bit better then knowing that."

With the trial having now reached a conclusion, Marian believes that those affected by Jason's death can now finally move on with their lives. 

She concluded: "I think that now the Corbett family can grieve for Jason, and the kids can get on with their lives. And they're having a good life... and they're being well looked after and loved by everybody."