Jason Harris from the Flint suburb of Davison, Michigan, is accused of murdering his wife five years ago.
When 36-year-old Christina Ann-Thompson Harris, the mother of two children, was found unresponsive in her home in September 2014, her death was ruled as an accidental overdose, according to Genesee County prosecutor, David Leyton, who spoke at Tuesday's press conference in downtown Flint.
Jason Harris had told police she had been battling a cold and "was not awake and not talking to him but was coughing and in a restless sleep" by the time he left for work.
In an interview with the police, a neighbor said Jason Harris asked a neighbor to check in on his wife. When she was unable to wake her, she called for another neighbor who happened to be a nurse.
Leyton said that other neighbor "immediately recognized" Christina Harris was dead and called 911.
Another neighbor told law enforcement officials that Jason Harris had given her milk and cereal on the night of her death and that she dropped the bowl while eating and passed out on the floor.
Five years later, a coroner amended the cause of Christina Harris's death a homicide from accidental heroin toxicity.
Prosecutors believe Jason Harris murdered his wife after she discovered he was having an affair.
"We believe he put heroin into her cereal and milk the night that she died after getting it from someone, thinking it would be tasteless and odorless, much like he had asked his coworkers multiple times."
"A Michigan man is behind bars on a murder charge for allegedly killing his wife by spiking her cereal with heroin.… https://t.co/DB5zBRcYjN— d○○d (@d○○d)1567018477.0
Her family was shocked over the ruling and was incredulous over the claims of illness and drugs causing her death.
Leyton said "that she would never use drugs, let alone heroin."
"By all accounts, Christina Harris was an incredibly loving mother."
Heroin-spiked cereal used to murder Jason Harris's wife, Michigan police say - The Washington Post https://t.co/Eb7CFP5DGw— Joan Gralla (@Joan Gralla)1566998496.0
Police soon discovered further details about the couple's troubled marriage after her death.
In August 2016, the case was turned over from Davison Police to Michigan State Police. Further investigation revealed Jason Harris had sent emails and texts to several other women before and after his wife's death, according to Michigan Live.
Leyton said in a press conference that two of Jason Harris's siblings came forward to the police with information about their brother having an affair in October 2014.
A woman had moved into the couple's home two months after Christina's death.
Jason Harris also purchased a plane ticket to Rhode Island to visit another woman with whom he exchanged more than 5,800 text messages.
VIDEO + STORY: Less than two weeks after his wife’s death, Genessee County Prosecutor David Leyton says Jason Harri… https://t.co/sLaiWBzv4O— Alexandra Leslie (@Alexandra Leslie)1567078906.0
When a coworker asked why he did not call an ambulance for his wife, he had no response, but told another woman that he "just needed to get rid of Christina."
He chose not to divorce his wife to avoid paying child support and alimony.
For him, killing her was the only option.
@KatiePhang I will never understand why these people can't suck it up and get a divorce.— KLB (@KLB)1567021302.0
@KatiePhang I guess it's a trend, if you want to leave your spouse, kill them. Cheaper then divorce. Who are these people?— mariembattista (@mariembattista)1567044109.0
After a failed attempt at having her drink water laced with five Xanax pills, he hired a hitman to kill her.
But the contracted killer was caught with a weapon while having Christina Harris under surveillance and was sent back to prison.
He then asked a coworker to carry out the same task for the amount of $5,000.
“Jason Harris then asked a coworker if they would kill his wife.” I wonder what Fantasy Football was like with thi… https://t.co/oGASvjfVLa— Katie Phang (@Katie Phang)1567020811.0
Leading up to her death, she was fearful that her husband would harm her.
"She told a friend that if something happens to me, look at Jason."
Jason Harris faced Genesee District Judge Nathaniel C. Perry III on Tuesday and was charged with single counts of premeditated first-degree murder, solicitation of murder and delivery of a controlled substance causing death.
He is held in Genesee County Jail without bond and is due back in court on September 5.
If convicted, he could face a lifetime in prison.
The true crime novel The Doctor's Wife Is Dead: The True Story of a Peculiar Marriage, a Suspicious Death, and the Murder Trial that Shocked Ireland is available here to see another case where homicide was chosen over divorce.
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