ESCANABA, Mich. (WZMQ) – On Tuesday, a judge found probable cause for three charges against the Escanaba man accused of murdering 22-year-old Harley Corwin, who was pregnant.
On the second day of Tavaris Jackson’s preliminary examination, the prosecution called three witnesses to testify.
One witness was Escanaba Public Safety Detective Todd Chouinard, who conducted an hour and fifty-minute interview with Jackson. The interview was reviewed by the judge prior to the second day of the examination and not shown in court.
According to location-tracking app Life360, on July 3, Corwin’s phone spent an hour and a half at Fuller Park—near where her body was found with two bullet wounds to the head on July 8.
Chouinard told the prosecution Jackson did not give consistent answers in his interview regarding the time he and Corwin spent at Fuller Park, saying Jackson added details as authorities gave him more information.
“First he only saw her in the morning,” the detective said during the examination. “Then later on it was, ‘Oh she did come over to my house.’ Then later on, ‘We went down by the park. We drove for a little bit.’ And then it went further to driving past Ford River, almost toward Cedar River, Fuller Park area.”
Jackson’s defense argued that the prosecution did not establish a date of death.
“They elicited no testimony from the pathologist about when Miss Corwin actually died,” attorney Diane Kay-Hougaboom said, referring to pathologist Haaris Iqbal who testified on Monday.
The prosecution referred to Corwin’s death certificate, which states she died on or before July 4.
The defense also cited messages sent from Corwin’s phone to her friend on July 4. Prosecutor Lauren Wickman argued it is unknown who was using the phone. Wickman also noted the phone’s location after the time spent at Fuller Park matches security camera footage of Jackson at Menard’s.
Detective Chouinard also testified Corwin could not be seen in any footage inside Menard’s or in the footage of Jackson’s vehicle from outside the store.
“The last person that we have on video consistent with that Life 360 data is this defendant, without Miss Corwin,” said Wickman.
The judge determined there was probable cause on all three charges against Jackson—open murder, possession of a firearm at the time of the murder, and conduct that resulted in the death of a fetus.
At the end of the preliminary examination, the judge emphasized that this was a case of probable cause. He said the charges would need to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a jury trial.
The case will now go to the Delta County Circuit Court.
Click here for details on the first day of the preliminary exam.