North Carolina prosecutor dismisses homicide cost towards man in faculty scholar’s 2008 demise

An area North Carolina prosecutor has dropped a first-degree homicide cost towards a person whose conviction within the demise of a college scholar was overturned by a decide eight years later.

Gaston County District Lawyer Travis Web page formally dismissed on Friday the cost towards Mark Bradley Carver, 54, of Belmont, saying in a information launch that “the proof now not helps” the rely.

The dismissal meant Carver, who was launched from jail in 2019 however remained underneath home arrest whereas awaiting a brand new trial, bought an digital monitor faraway from his ankle late Friday, CBS affiliate WBTV reported.

“We’re completely satisfied it is lastly over,” stated Robin Carver, his sister-in-law. “It has been a very long time coming.”

Carver and his cousin had been charged with first-degree homicide within the 2008 demise of 20-year-old Ira Yarmolenko, who was a scholar on the College of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Ira Yarmolenko


Yarmolenko’s physique was discovered on the banks of the Catawba River subsequent to her automobile, which was on the backside of an embankment. A ribbon, bungee wire and drawstring have been wrapped round her neck.

Carver and the cousin, Neal Cassada, had been fishing close by. Cassada died hours earlier than his trial started. Carver, who has maintained his innocence all through, was convicted in 2011 and obtained a life sentence.

In June 2019, Superior Court docket Choose Christopher Bragg ordered a brand new trial, citing partly the DNA proof that prosecutors used towards Carver.

Web page, who grew to become DA in July 2021, additionally stated the proof now not supported a homicide cost towards Cassada. He stated in his information launch that the DNA prosecutors used at Carver’s trial to tie him to Yarmolenko’s automobile “now not contained a ample quantity of DNA for examination.”

However Chris Mumma, Carver’s lawyer and govt director of the North Carolina Middle on Precise Innocence, has stated state labs used outdated strategies to check the DNA discovered on the automobile.

“Each males are harmless – as they’ve all the time proclaimed,” Mumma stated in a information launch.

Mumma stated the DNA proof used to convict Carver was discredited when new federal requirements for DNA testing have been put into place, WBTV reported.

“Mark’s case shines a lightweight on the problems related to the interpretation of DNA mixtures earlier than requirements have been modified at our state lab and Charlotte-Mecklenburg lab,” Mumma stated.

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No different suspects in Yarmolenko’s homicide have been recognized. Web page stated his workplace will “proceed to hunt justice for the Yarmolenko household and all murder victims because the proof and rule of regulation allow.”

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