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Missouri Woman Is Found Dead On A Rural Road Two Days Before Her Dream Wedding, Exposing Her Fiancé's Shocking Double Life

Molly Watson had been “absolutely, 100% in love” with her fiancé James Addie, who she met while working at a local correctional center, but the giddy bride would never make it down the aisle.  

By Jill Sederstrom
Bride Found Dead Just Two Days Before Her Dream Wedding

Just two days before Molly Watson’s dream wedding, the 35-year-old was found shot to death abandoned on a dark, rural road in the Missouri backcountry.

Molly had been just days away from the marrying the man of her dreams—but an investigation would reveal that Molly’s fiancé, James Addie, was not the man he pretended to be.

Addie was hiding a secret double life that would ultimately cost Watson her life.

Molly’s brother, Tim Watson, told ABC’s “20/20” that she had been “absolutely, 100% in love” with Addie, who she met while working at the Moberly Area Correctional Center in Moberly, Missouri. Addie had been a corrections officer at the prison.

The relationship between the two coworkers quickly turned romantic, but it would take seven years before Addie popped the question, according to ABC News.

Once engaged, the pair began planning for a wedding in April of 2018.

“There was a lot of burgundy and gold, kind of reminded me of a Renaissance kind of themed wedding,” wedding planner Sam Cohen told “20/20” in an episode airing Friday. “From Molly’s perspective, it was going to be a beautiful wedding and the best day ever.”

While Molly was smitten with her fiancé, her family was less enthusiastic about welcoming Addie into the family.

“He could never look you in the eye. He could never talk to you directly. Everything was very evasive with him,” her brother Tim said. “He put off bad vibes to everybody.”

Those vibes were also picked up by Mark Price, the Randolph County recorder of deeds. Price was helping the couple apply for their marriage license just two days before Molly was killed when Price said Addie seemed “perturbed” when he asked if Addie had ever been married before and how the marriage had ended.

“He was just…like, ‘Why do you need to know that?” Price recalled to “20/20.”

Authorities said Addie claimed he'd divorced his previous wife, Melanie Addie, before she later died from injuries suffered in a car accident.

The couple secured their marriage license, but Molly would never make it down the aisle. Just days later, her body would be found abandoned along that rural road after she had been shot point-blank in the back of the head, local station KMIZ reports.

Investigators would later discover that Addie had been living a secret double life for years and his wife, Melanie, was alive and well and had been happily married to him for 23 years.

She’d later testify in Addie’s 2021 trial that she had no idea her husband had been carrying on an affair for years, KTVI reported last year.

Melanie described her husband to ABC’s “20/20” as a “pretty selfish person” who could be capable of murder.

“He could be controlling and intimidating … it could be challenging,” she said. “It just seemed like something he would do to fix a problem.”

Although Addie continues to maintain his innocence, a jury convicted him in April 2021 of first-degree murder and armed criminal action. Prosecutors were able to link ammunition found at the crime scene to Addie and also discovered a T-shirt, his daughter would testify she had made, covered in blood near the crime scene.

He was sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 10 years, KMIZ reports.

“Justice has been served today. James Addie will never be released from prison in the State of Missouri,” Monroe County Prosecuting Attorney Talley Smith said in a statement after the sentencing. “His actions destroyed two families: the family of his victim, Molly Watson, and his own.”

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