AUSTIN (KXAN) – A tangled love triangle may have been the motivation for the murder of a woman found at the bottom of Lake Travis in July 2011.
On the opening day of testimony at the murder trial of Joe Carr, family and friends closest to Carr and Veronica Navarro described an unsteady relationship between the two in the weeks leading up to Navarro’s murder.
In opening statements, prosecutors told jurors Navarro still maintained an on-again, off-again relationship with ex-boyfriend Chris Kashimba even though she lived with Carr at his Spicewood home.
“When the defendant was at work, she would go see Chris,” said prosecutor Amy Meredith.
Days before her disappearance, Kashimba testified Carr grew suspicious of Navarro and the relationship she maintained with her ex-boyfriend. He said Navarro would express fears about Carr’s temper and drinking problem and that she intended to end the relationship and return to Kashimba.
Manuela Navarro, Veronica’s cousin, testified she and other family came up from Laredo to visit her on the final weekend of June 2011, but never saw her because Carr would not allow it. Instead, he wanted the couple to go to the lake.
Days later, Navarro’s body was found in a tent at the bottom of Lake Travis.
“Wrapped up in a tent, hogtied, with ropes, paint cans and cinder blocks tied to it,” said Meredith during opening statements.
Carr was caught days later trying to cross the Canadian border with much of his possessions inside his vehicle.
Veronica constantly posted status updates on Facebook according to Manuela. Her family knew something was wrong when the updates abruptly stopped.
The relationship between Carr and Navarro was not very old according to Manuela who said the two had only been dating for approximately a month, but Veronica was excited about moving into Carr’s Spicewood home.
During evidence presented on Tuesday morning, the prosecution used a calendar of June/July 2011 to lay out the timeline of events:
- June 26th – Navarro’s last Facebook update.
- June 27th – Navarro attends job interview at carousel pediatrics.
- June 28th – Carr goes to work at Pedernales fire department. Co-workers say he was tired and lethargic.
- Carr said he was sick and asked to leave.
- June 29th – Cell phone records show Carr was at Pace Bend Park around 1:15am.
- June 30th – Carr requests time off against company policy. (Two weeks notice normally required.)
- July 1st – July 3rd – Cell phone records show Carr travels to South Padre Island.
- July 4th – Carr goes into work.
- July 5th – Carr goes into work.
- July 6th – Carr gets off 48-hour shift at Pedernales FD at 9am. Three hours later, a body is found at Lake Travis.
- July 7th – Body identified as Veronica Navarro.
- July 9th – After stopping Carr at the border, Canadian authorities call Carr’s employer to find out if he had requested a month off.