AJ Prince is outraged that her youthful sister Jessica Chambers has not obtained justice almost 4 years after she was brutally killed.
A decide in Mississippi declared a second mistrial earlier this month within the case of a person accused within the burning dying of the 19-year-old after a jury as soon as once more couldn’t attain a verdict.
Panola County Circuit Decide Gerald Chatham made his ruling within the trial of Quentin Tellis after jurors deliberated for about 10 hours throughout two days. Nonetheless, Tellis shouldn’t be strolling free. He’s additionally going through homicide expenses within the stabbing killing of a graduate scholar in 2015, lower than a 12 months after Chambers’ horrific homicide.
Chambers, a former cheerleader at South Panola Excessive Faculty, suffered extreme burns protecting 93 % of her physique after being doused with a flammable liquid and set ablaze. She was found by first responders rising from the woods close to her burning automobile carrying solely her underwear. The teenager died hours later at a Memphis hospital.
Chambers’ homicide has been the topic of an Oxygen docu-series titled “Unspeakable Crime: The Killing of Jessica Chambers,” which concludes Saturday. Prince was one among a number of relations who got here ahead to supply some form of justice to the aspiring nurse.
Prince advised Fox Information she suspected Chambers was hanging out “with the fallacious crowd” and was decided to provide her a greater life.
“I had begged her to return stay with me,” mentioned Prince. “My husband was being deployed and… I primarily didn’t need to stay on my own. … He left in November 2014 and I requested, ‘If I fly you out right here, will you come stick with me? Something you need or want, it’s on me.’
“I attempted for months to get her to return with me, at the very least till Christmas. … She didn’t need to go away our mother. She felt our mother wanted her and he or she wasn’t prepared to depart. So she ended up getting a job. After which I knew as soon as she obtained that job, she was not coming to remain in Texas.”
Prince admitted their relationship was turbulent at instances over Chambers’ rebelliousness. As a mom of two, Prince wasn’t comfy along with her youthful sibling smoking marijuana.
“I didn’t agree along with her smoking weed,” mentioned Prince. “It induced stress… I didn’t need my children to be round that and to see that. We’d battle, however we all the time made up. You simply couldn’t be mad at Jessica. We had been as shut.”
Tellis, now 29, was accused of burning Chambers on a rural backroad in Mississippi in December 2014. As within the first trial, jurors had to decide on between proof that prosecutors mentioned linked the defendant to Chambers’ dying and testimony by rising staff that they heard a dying Chambers say somebody named “Eric” or “Derek” attacked her.
Prince mentioned she by no means spoke to her about a person with both identify. She additionally by no means knew of Tellis.
Protection attorneys insisted that prosecutors had the fallacious man, pointing to the testimony of 10 firefighters and emergency medical personnel who couldn’t clearly hear what Chambers mentioned. A speech pathologist had testified that Chambers was so severely burned that she wouldn’t have been in a position to produce “articulate” sound.
Prince is adamant that Tellis is responsible of burning Chambers alive.
“I completely do,” she mentioned about whether or not she nonetheless felt Tellis was responsible. “I imagine [it] 100 %.”
In the course of the trial, it was revealed Tellis repeatedly modified his story when confronted with new proof. Whereas Tellis initially denied seeing Chambers late within the day, he later admitted he had been along with her up till about an hour earlier than her dying.
Protection attorneys characterised these lapses as regular forgetfulness, however investigators characterised them as deception and mendacity.
Native Memphis station WMC TV beforehand reported investigators uncovered textual content messages between Chambers and Tellis that exposed she denied his requests for intercourse 4 instances the day she was burned alive.
Based on the documentary, authorized analyst Beth Karas requested Tellis why he deleted the textual content messages after her dying.
“I wasn’t scared however after we came upon who it was…who died there, I imply, I simply deleted my contact along with her,” replied Tellis. “As a result of I didn’t need to have a deceased individual on my cellphone, with a quantity in my cellphone that’s simply gonna be now not used.”
Prince mentioned Tellis’ claims simply do not add up.
“I’m awfully confused about how… he initially advised investigators that he had intercourse along with her per week earlier than she died,” mentioned Prince. “After which he rotated and mentioned two weeks after he met her, however he solely knew her for 10 days. So which deceive fall for then? … I don’t get it.”
Prince admitted within the docu-series that after Chambers’ dying, she struggled to belief individuals once more.
“I do know now there are actual monsters out on the planet,” she mentioned. “There actually are sick folks that take pleasure in killing [others] for no purpose. So now after I stroll out my door, I hold my children shut. … I don’t belief anyone anymore. … Now I’m hesitant after I meet new buddies as a result of I don’t know what they’re able to. … I’ve a handful of buddies and I’m not searching for anymore as a result of I don’t belief individuals.”
Tellis’ attorneys didn’t instantly reply to Fox Information’ request for remark.
There’s a risk for prosecutors to retry the case for a 3rd time, however there’s no instant indication of whether or not or not they’ll elect to do this.
Within the meantime, Tellis has been indicted for homicide within the stabbing dying of Meing-Chen Hsiao, a Taiwanese graduate scholar, and his trial is pending in Louisiana. Tellis has already pleaded responsible to unauthorized use of Hsiao’s debit card and can also be serving a five-year sentence of an unrelated housebreaking conviction in Mississippi.
And whereas jurors in the end couldn’t resolve whether or not Tellis killed Chambers, Prince has already made up her thoughts.
“I simply don’t perceive how one can sit there and say you don’t have the center to be a foul individual, however you’re on trial for 2 brutal murders,” she mentioned. “Two brutal murders the place two ladies had been tortured into dying probably the most painful manner… I’m simply baffled that persons are alleged to imagine that coincidences occur, not as soon as, however twice.”
Prince is hoping her involvement with the docu-series will handle some misconceptions concerning the teen that she felt the media has gotten fallacious since her dying. However extra importantly, she doesn’t need the general public to overlook the younger woman whose horrifying dying nonetheless stays unsolved.
“She had nieces, she had nephews that she’s going to now not ever get to see develop up,” mentioned a tearful Prince. “She has three nieces proper right here which can be following in her footsteps, doing cheerleading, solely as a result of she did it. Nobody understands how a lot we love and miss her. … Jessica was the puzzle piece that put all of us collectively. She was the little sister I by no means knew I wanted. … She didn’t deserve what occurred to her, no one does.”
“Unspeakable Crime: The Killing of Jessica Chambers” concludes Saturday at 7 p.m. on Oxygen. Fox Information’ Travis Fedschun and the Related Press contributed to this report.