A pregnant Maryland teacher who went missing for over a week has been found dead in a shallow grave. On Wednesday, Laura Wallen's boyfriend was arrested and charged with her murder.
Just days earlier, Wallen’s boyfriend Tyler Tessier held hands with Wallen’s mother at a press conference, where he expressed hope that his girlfriend would come home.
“Laura, if you’re listening, it doesn’t matter what’s happened. It doesn’t matter what type of trouble. There’s nothing we can’t fix together,” Tesser said Monday, facing the camera.
Montgomery County police Chief Thomas Manger said at a Wednesday that the body of the 31-year-old woman was discovered 38 miles west of Washington, according to CBS News. Wallen was four-months pregnant. Tessier is believed to be the father of the unborn child, the Washington Post reports.
"We had a real sense of dread this is the way this was going to end up," Manger said.
Police said that Tessier made several visits to the area where Wallen's body was found, CBS affiliate WUSA-TV reports. Tire tracks led police to the slain teacher’s shallow grave. Police added that Tessier gave inconsistent stories about his interactions with Wallen before she’d gone missing. As for Tessier’s appearance at Monday’s news conference: Police said they made “a calculated decision” to allow Tessier to attend.
Police believe Wallen was killed September 3, one day after a surveillance video captured images of her and Tessier at a grocery store together. A day later, on September. 4, Wallen’s sister received texts from Wallen saying that her unborn baby might not belong to Tessier, according to the Washington Post. Police think those texts were actually sent by Tessier.
“I am like 95 percent sure Tyler is not the father,” one of the texts said. Another read, “Tyler is never going to forgive me. If he tries to call you, please tell him he’s a great guy because I know I really hurt his feelings.”
On September. 2, Wallen texted her sister, stating, “Tyler has me on an adventure in the country. . . don’t know why I’m here but it’s for something.”
When her sister asked where she was, Wallen told her she was “waiting in a field.” The social studies teacher then texted her sister a photo of a large field. Police say it’s the same field where her body was discovered.
Wallen has worked at Wilde Lake High School since 2014. The Baltimore Sun reports that she was named Wilde Lake High’s Senior Class Teacher of the Year in 2016.
Police are still awaiting autopsy results.
[Photo: Montgomery County Police Department]