Missing pregnant teacher found dead, boyfriend charged with murder

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Missing pregnant teacher found dead, boyfriend charged with murder

Montgomery County police say Laura Wallen, the missing Howard County teacher, was killed by her boyfriend.

The Washington Post reports that Laura Wallen, who had taught social studies in a Howard County high school since 2014, was first reported missing September 4.

"This arrest does provide some answers, but I'm aware of the impact on Ms. Wallen's community", said Montgomery County Police Chief Tom Manger in a press conference on Wednesday.

On Sept. 7, police found Wallen's auto in Columbia and said Tessier drove the vehicle there and admitted to removing the front tag.

Wallen's family told police they received a series of "troubling" text messages about an hour after she was last seen at about 8:30 a.m.at her condo in Olney where she lived alone. He said that Wallen sent a chilling text message to a friend saying that Tessier had driven her to field in the Damascus area and she was unclear why.

"Laura, if you're listening, it doesn't matter what has happened".

"I know what she means to me, and I know what she means to everybody else", he said. The acquaintance refused to assist him.

At the news conference, Tessier held hands with her parents as they listened to investigators. Now, police said one of the speakers at that press conference was likely her killer.

"If somebody has her, please understand that you've taken away a huge person in so many people's lives", Tessier said. According to the police chief, "the decision to allow him to participate in that news conference was a calculated decision made by the detectives in this case... done with the approval and knowledge of the victim's family". Tessier had reportedly given inconsistent statements beforehand, and police wanted him to keep talking, so they had him address reporters at the presser.

"We had a real sense of dread this is the way this was going to end up", Manger said. "It's nothing", Tessier said Monday, when he accompanied the family to an event where the Wallens offered a reward for information on her whereabouts.

Friends sent me this picture of Laura Wallen and Tyler Tessier. The property owner has "no involvement" in the investigation, Manger said.

He said prosecutors would determine whether to also charge Tessier in the unborn baby's death.

Wallen, a popular high school history teacher, was four months pregnant when she died.

She had been "super-excited" about the new school year, her father, Mark Wallen, told reporters Wednesday.

Although investigations are now under way regarding the possible motive behind the murder, speculations are doing rounds regarding Tessier's possible involvement with another woman, who was also interviewed by the police, Heavy.com reported. There will be large teams of people available at Wilde Lake High School and Murray Hill Middle School on Thursday to support every student and staff member that need somebody to talk to.

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