Witnesses Describe Day of Tina Caronna’s Murder

(Memphis) Thursday is the fourth anniversary of the day Tina Caronna disappeared in Bartlett.

Her body was found two days later and her husband Joe Caronna is on trial for her murder.

Prosecutors say he killed Tina to cover up a secret life he was living. 

They say he was scamming people out of hundreds of thousands and was even having an affair.

Jeff Cox lives across the street from where Joe and Tina lived in Bartlett.

He has security cameras and recorded Tina leaving her house for the last time.

So after she disappeared Joe went over to his house and wanted to see the footage.

 “I said lets look and see if someone pulled behind her when she left or if someone strange was walking up and down the sidewalk,” said Cox.

Cox didn’t see any of that, but he says he saw Tina leave in her truck around 11:00AM, and then Joe left in us Chavelle about thirty minutes later.

Joe’s defense  says that’s not possible because Cox told police a different story back when Tina’s body was found.

Police couldn’t check out the video themselves because it tapes over itself every two weeks, and Caronna and Cox didn’t tell police about the video until six months later.

The defense also hopes the jury doesn’t trust the credibility of this witness Amanda Panis.

She told jurors she saw the truck Tina’s body was in parked near her house on Bunnick Drive in Bartlett around 12:45.

Panis originally told police she saw the truck at 9:45.

Panis says she was confused because her work schedule was different from normal that day.

Caronna’s best friend Gary Hathaway gets emotional when he remembers taking Caronna to pick up his wife’s murdered body.

“He was saying ‘yeah it was Tina. I’ve got closure now. No don’t send flowers Tina doesn’t like flowers,” said Hathaway.

Hathaway says Caronna made plans to work on cars with him Saturday morning but he took about two hours to get there.

 He says Caronna told him if police came looking for him that work session would be his alibi.

Hathaway started connecting the dots and figured out Caronna had to go back to the area Tina’s body was discovered to change his car at his garage in an effort to keep his story straight.

“I walked around the house and looked in the garage door and the red Chavelle was in there,” said Hathaway.

Homicide investigator Connie Justice says when she went to interview Joe Caronna the day Tina’s body was found he had bruises all over his forearms.

“They were bluish and purplish and rather faint,” said Justice.

She says Caronna was frantic when she met with him just after he found out his wife’s body had been found.

The defense says police never took pictures of these bruises, so there’s no way to tell they exist.

Sargent Justice says she didn’t have a camera on her.

Day three of testimony will continue Friday.

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