Burned alive victim Jessica Chambers’ parents will finally get answers to the questionable death of their daughter soon as her case gets heard in court where her alleged killer appears and witnesses recall the gruesome death of the Mississippi cheerleader.
The three-year-old murder case is finally getting attention it deserves as the trial week began on Tuesday, with suspect 29-year-old Quinton Tellis pleading not guilty for the murder that occurred on December 6, 2014, on Herron Road near a tree farm in Courtland, Mississippi, the Daily Mail reported. If proven guilty, Tellis will be imprisoned for life without parole.
Based on the report, the 19-year-old former cheerleader was burned alive near a car that was also set alight. She died four hours after she was taken to the hospital, suffering agonizing pain as 93 percent of her body had been charred from the incident.
“Horrific burns, horrific pain. I would venture to guess if all of us sitting here were to know we’re going to die, that the very last way we would want to die would be by fire. But Jessica was set on fire,” District Attorney John Champion described the horrifying scene.
But while prosecutors believed it was Tellis who did it, defense attorneys may be in for a field day as witnesses claim it was someone named “Eric” or “Derek” who lit her up after dousing her with flammable liquid beside her burning car, per a CBS report. Apparently, the firefighters who responded to the scene were still able to talk to Jessica as she was burning alive and hear her identify her murderer.
“She had her arms out, saying, ‘Help me, help me, help me,'” tearfully said Cole Haley while in the witness stand. Haley is the first responding firefighter at the time Jessica was burned alive, according to USA Today.
“Her hair was fried like it had been stuck in a light socket. Her face was black, and her body was severely burned.”
After seeing Chambers burning up — literally — in the middle of the road wearing nothing but her panties, Haley immediately covered her up with a blanket to “conceal her.”
However, when speaking about the killer’s name, Haley backtracked from the responding firefighters’ initial report on the incident hours after the crime was committed, saying he “did not personally hear her say ‘Eric.'”
“I was face to face with her, and you could barely understand her. She kept asking for water.”
Defense lawyer Darla Palmer has since been building up their argument on Chambers’ initial statement that a person named “Eric” should be prosecuted for the burned alive case as at least eight responders have attested to it in their initial report.
Even so, those that were called to the witness stand on Wednesday had been explaining that while the victim appeared to say “Eric,” it was difficult to say for certain as her lips had been severely burned that she even pronounced her name as Jessica “Tambers.”
The case of the 19-year-old girl burned alive in Mississippi is expected to last two weeks. Champion is confident that the jury will convict the 29-year-old main suspect for allegedly setting her on fire after he “thought he had killed her” when they had sex in the car. Tellis and Chambers only met 14 days after the victim’s death and the prosecution found evidence that the suspect had been trying to convince her to have sex, which she repeatedly turned down.
[Featured Image by georgeclerk/iStock]