Investigation Discovery’s ’48 Hours NCIS: The Marine’s Wife’ examines the tale of Erin Corwin’s disappearance and murder, which turned out to be a matter involving not just rage and evil but also a love triangle like no other. The 19-year-old wife of United States Marine Jonathan Corwin was allegedly pregnant when she left their home at the Twentynine Palms Marine base in California in late June 2014, never to be seen alive again. But as per official reports, the baby was not her husband’s; it was her lover’s -the same lover, Christopher Lee, who turned out to be her killer.
Who is Christopher Lee?
Christopher “Chris” Brandon Lee, a now-former Marine himself, also stationed at the Twentynine Palms Marine Corps base with his family, was Erin’s next-door neighbor. Being almost six years older than the teenager and her husband, married, and with a daughter of his own, Chris (and his wife) struck up a friendship with the newlywed couple, which soon turned into an affair for him and Erin. In fact, the pair often discussed leaving their respective spouses to start a family together themselves, with Chris claiming that his girlfriend would be a wonderful stepmother to his daughter, whom she often babysat.
But what Erin didn’t realize at that time was that Chris had a reputation of being rash and reckless, acting on his gut-instincts and treating life-threatening weapons like toys, according to Shanna Hogan’s ‘Secrets of a Marine’s Wife.‘ Moreover, Chris was distraught because he was denied deployment, an act he considered heroic. So, for around a month before Erin was brutally slain, he’d been suicidal, wanting to kill himself over the mine shafts where he ended up murdering Erin. On that fateful day, they had argued over his behavior and her allegedly molesting his daughter before he ultimately snapped.
Where is Christopher Lee Now?
When Christopher Lee stood trial for the first-degree murder charge with a special circumstance of lying in wait against him, he testified in his own defense. With his tale of apparent child abuse, he was allegedly hoping to get his count reduced to at least involuntary manslaughter. But it didn’t work, as the jury took only 15 minutes to reach their verdict of guilty as charged. Thus, in November 2016, the 27-year-old was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
“I made the decision to kill her,” Chris testified. “I was controlled by the anger. The hate I felt that day, it was something I never want to experience again.” And when the time came for him to be sentenced, he made another statement, apologizing to Erin’s friends and family for the hurt and pain he caused while still maintaining the story he had stuck to throughout his trial. Chris also stated that he “confessed” to killing his girlfriend to “save his humanity.”
“I will accept punishment for the crime I committed, but I cannot, and will not, admit to crimes I did not commit,” he added, referring to the theory of pre-meditation. “I did not want to kill Erin, and I did not plan to kill Erin.” Therefore, today, Christopher Brandon Lee, 31, is incarcerated at the California Institution for Men, a state prison located in Chino, San Bernardino County. As per his sentencing, the ex-Marine will spend the rest of his natural life behind bars.
Read More: Where is Jonathan Corwin Now?