The wife of a Dallas man accused of getting rid of evidence in her husband’s murder investigation was ordered on Friday to remain in federal custody.
The accused gunman in the homicide was her lover, according to federal officials and Dallas police.
Jennifer Lynne Faith, 48, waived a detention hearing Friday morning in federal court, and she was ordered to be held without bond.
She was arrested Wednesday in her Oak Cliff home in Dallas
Darrin Lopez, Faith’s boyfriend, was arrested in January in Tennessee and charged with the Oct. 9 murder of James Faith, an American Airlines IT director who was gunned down while the couple walked their dog in the 1000 block of Waverly Drive in Dallas.
In an interview with Dallas homicide detective Chris Walton just after the homicide, Jennifer Faith said the killer, who was wearing a blue face mask, repeatedly shot her husband, and then attacked her, knocking her to the ground and placing duct tape around her hands. She screamed for help and the suspect fled, she told police.
Jennifer Faith faces a federal charge of obstruction of justice.
Text messages between Lopez and Jennifer Faith revealed that as she publicly projected to be a grieving widow, privately, she repeatedly instructed Lopez to get rid of evidence in the case, according to federal authorities.
If convicted, Jennifer Faith faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.
“I am pleased to see that there were no stones left unturned during the course of this investigation, and that our collaborative efforts have brought those involved to justice,” said Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia in a news release. “I am also excited to continue this partnership with the USDOJ in our ongoing determination to remove the criminal elements off the streets.”
Federal authorities said Jennifer Faith was having an affair with Lopez, who she dated in high school and college. From Sept. 30 to Oct. 30, 2020, she and Lopez exchanged 14,363 texts, according to federal court documents.
“I truly can’t be without you at this point,” Jennifer Faith texted Lopez in December.
James Faith and his wife were having martial problems at the time he was killed, authorities said.
Credit reports reviewed following the killing of James Faith showed that Lopez was having financial problems. According to payment history for his home in Cumberland Furnace, Tennessee, Lopez had $38,157 past due on his mortgage. Utility records showed that his water had been turned off in October.
In October, Lopez is accused of driving from Tennessee to the Faiths’ Dallas home, waiting until the couple left to walk their dog, then shooting James Faith seven times before fleeing.
Just hours after the killing, a GoFundMe account was established called “Support for Jennifer Faith.” More than $60,000 was raised. On Oct. 13, more than $30,000 was withdrawn from the account.
A MetLife Insurance Co. agent contacted Dallas police in November and told them that James Faith had a life insurance policy in excess of $600,000 and that the beneficiary was Jennifer Faith.
Through the investigation, Lopez was arrested in January and detectives discovered in Lopez’s home a .45-caliber handgun that ballistic tests proved match the one that killed James Faith.
Authorities also learned that Lopez owned a Nissan Titan pickup that matched witnesses’ description of the shooter’s vehicle. Weeks after the fatal shooting, Tennessee authorities observed a distinctive “T” on the truck’s back window which matched descriptions by witnesses.
In January, Jennifer Faith admitted she called Lopez daily, but denied having an intimate relationship, authorities said.
Federal authorities later determined that she contacted Lopez and told him that if he was questioned about the daily communications between the two to tell detectives that he was an old friend going through a divorce and she was giving him support.
After Lopez’s arrest, an analysis of his cell phone revealed that she was updating him on her efforts to collect on James Faith’s life insurance policy and coached Lopez on how to respond to potential police questioning.
Text messages between the couple indicated Jennifer Faith instructed Lopez to remove the “T” off his truck.
“I have a bad feeling and I really think you need to get that sticker off ASAP...like today,” Jennifer Faith texted to Lopez in December.
“Sticker done,” Lopez responded on Dec. 6, confirming he had removed the “T” sticker from his truck as Faith had instructed.
On Jan. 10, Jennifer Faith texted Lopez to tell him that she was going to delete contents from her cell phone before meeting with investigators. Federal authorities determined she did that, but they were able to recover the deleted text messages off of Lopez’s cell phone.
Lopez remained in the Dallas County Jail on Friday in lieu of $1 million bond on a murder charge. He also is being held without bond on a federal charge of transporting a firearm in interstate commerce.