Judge gives Jasmine Pace $5 million bond to alleged killer
A Tennessee man who is alleged to have killed his girlfriend just before Thanksgiving this year saw his bond set the tune of $5 million – a staggering number in the world eyes of a lawyer in the Volunteer State.
Jason ChenThe 22-year-old is charged with criminal homicide in the death of a 22-year-old Jasmine “Jazzy” Tempo. The two were together at the time of the victim’s disappearance. She was last seen alive by her family on November 22, 2022. At the end of the month, Chen was charged with her murder.
On December 1, 2022, Pace’s body was wrapped in a garbage bag and placed in a suitcase nearby Suck Creek Road in Chattanooga. Police said the young woman was handcuffed and both ankles were tied to her right wrist. She had been stabbed and cut about 60 times.
During Chen’s bail hearing late last week, prosecutors detailed the final moments of Pace’s life — from the state’s point of view.
“First and foremost, there are 60 total, that is, six-zero, sharp force injuries,” said Dr. Stephen Cogwell the court said, according to Chattanooga CBS affiliate WDEF. “These are stab wounds and lacerations of varying sizes.”
“Her bound position is such that virtually any wound can be inflicted on her while in that position,” Cogswell explained in comments from Chattanooga NBC affiliate WRBC.
Chattanooga Police Department detective Zack Crawford testified that traces of blood indicated that Pace was murdered at Chen’s apartment. The lead detective on the case also said that Chen’s phone records show that he traveled almost exactly to where the suitcase containing the victim’s body was found.
“The fact that I have to say the words ‘garbage bag’ and ‘parcel’ when we’re dealing with a 23-year-old young woman who has friends and family to care for her is abhorrent,” he said Hamilton County District Attorney Coty Wamp argued during the bond hearing.
Prosecutors didn’t want Chen to face a prison sentence at all and tried to classify the defendant not only as dangerous but also as a fugitive.
At one point in the hearing, Wamp and Crawford discussed additional GPS data allegedly linked to the defendant.
“Can you tell me what time the phone pinged which location in Nashville you were at?” she asked.
The detective said the location was “Nashville Metro Airport.”
“And how close could that phone ping get Mr. Chen’s phone to the Nashville airport?” the prosecutor investigated.
To which Crawford replied, “100 yards or less.”
The detective also testified that the blood he found in the defendant’s home was “the largest amount” he had “ever seen.”
Police allege that several rooms in Chen’s home were stained with blood, including the hardwood floor in the living room, the grout in the bathroom, and the carpet in the bedroom. Blood spatter, police said, was also found on the bathroom wall. Crawford testified to these findings, as well as later findings by a forensic team who found that there had previously been more blood in the living room, bathroom, and bedroom that had been cleaned by someone.
“There is no defendant who deserves a higher bond than Mr. Chen,” Wamp said during the altercation. “In the state’s view, there is no bond that is high enough. Everywhere this defendant goes, based on the evidence presented today, we know the community is less safe.”
The defense had requested bail of $250,000 – noting that the state constitution requires bail for criminal suspects.
The defendant’s mother Shufang Chenwitnessed by a translator.
“He tells me he’s very scared here,” she said. “I promise my husband and I that we will bring him to justice every time.”
Judge Larry Ablesin evaluating the $5 million bond, said that if the defendant paid 10 percent of that amount and was released, he would be subject to house arrest with certain geographic restrictions.
“I think there are some real issues for Mr. Chen,” Ables said.
Chen’s next court date is currently scheduled for February 16, 2023 at 9:00 a.m
[Image via screengrab/WDEF]
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https://lawandcrime.com/crime/tennessee-man-accused-of-handcuffing-girlfriend-and-stabbing-her-dozens-of-times-before-stuffing-body-in-suitcase-held-on-hefty-bond/ Judge gives Jasmine Pace $5 million bond to alleged killer