Barton Corbin pleaded guilty in September 2006, admitting he killed both women and staged their deaths to look like suicides. Corbin, 50, is serving a life sentence.
According to his federal habeas corpus petition that challenges the constitutionality of his imprisonment, Corbin contends he was not fully advised of his rights before entering the guilty pleas.
Corbin further contends his defense team provided ineffective assistance of counsel because they did not challenge the legality of his guilty plea. Corbin also accuses the judge of bias and the prosecutor of misconduct.
In the case of Dorothy “Dolly” Hearn, 27, her June 6, 1990, death was classified as a suicide for 14 years in Richmond County. She was found dead in her Augusta home from a gunshot wound and a handgun was nearby. Hearn was a senior dental school student and had been trying to end her relationship with Corbin.
Hearn’s case was reopened after the Dec. 4, 2004, death of Corbin’s wife, Jennifer. The 33-year-old mother of two was found dead in her Gwinnett County, Ga., home from a gunshot wound. A handgun was nearby. The Corbins were in the middle of divorce proceedings.
Corbin had pleaded not guilty in both cases and was being tried in Gwinnett County when he changed his plea to guilty. The plea followed District Attorney Danny Porter’s discovery that a friend gave Corbin the gun that killed his wife.
According to the Department of Corrections, Corbin is in Dodge State Prison in Chester, Ga.