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Texas Teen Charged With The Murder Of His Own Mom, Who Was Found In The Trunk Of Their Family Car Following Chase

Investigators discovered Michelle Roenz dead in the trunk of a car after authorities say her son Tyler Roenz led police on a high-speed chase in Nebraska.

By Jill Sederstrom
Killer Motive: What Drives People To Kill?

A Texas teenager who allegedly told authorities he felt “no emotion” when they discovered his mother’s slain body in the trunk of his family’s car, is now being charged with her murder.

Tyler Roenz, 17, was charged Thursday with murder and tampering with evidence in the death and disappearance of his mother, 49-year-old Michelle Roenz, according to a statement from Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzales.

Tyler, who is being charged as an adult, according to The Associated Press, is currently being held in Nebraska, where he was arrested earlier this month after fleeing his home state of Texas in the family’s Mazda 3.

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Authorities were able to track the teen to Nebraska and take him into custody on Oct. 14 after he crashed into a tree during a high-speed pursuit.

Police handouts of Michelle and Tyler Roenz

“The 17-year-old suspect was discharged from the hospital on Friday and was taken into custody to await extradition,” Cody Thomas, the public relations director for the Nebraska State Patrol told Oxygen.com Wednesday.

A court hearing in Hall County is scheduled for Friday regarding the teen’s extradition back to Texas, he said.

A spokesperson for the sheriff’s office told Oxygen.com there was “no timeframe” for when the extradition could happen.

After Tyler was taken into custody earlier this month, he allegedly told authorities he felt “no emotion” when they discovered his mother’s dead body in the trunk of the vehicle, The Houston Chronicle reports.

An autopsy would later reveal that Michelle died of blunt force trauma and strangulation after the medical examiner found ligature marks to her neck and a broken hyoid bone, according to court records obtained by the news outlet.

Investigators believe Michelle was killed the morning of Oct.13 at the family’s Humble, Texas home while home alone with her son.

Tyler allegedly told law enforcement authorities that the pair didn’t fight that morning, but he admitted that she hadn’t gotten in the trunk by herself. He also refused to discuss her injuries other than to reference using more than his hands, according to the court documents.

Tyler’s father alerted the sheriff’s office later that day after coming home to find a human tooth and blood in the garage of the home, according to court records previously obtained by KTRK.

He followed the trail of blood into the master bedroom of the house, where authorities said he found four more teeth and a pool of blood. After finding no sign of his missing wife or son, he reported the disappearance to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities were able to track the teen heading north through credit card records.

At the time of Michelle’s death, Tyler had been out on bond for a felony charge connected to an attempted sexual assault of a female high school student.

According to court records obtained by KHOU, the student told investigators that Tyler allegedly picked her up from school and started to attack her, trying to rip of her clothes, grope her and bite her before pushing her out of the car half-naked.

That case remains ongoing.