Autopsy Report: Olney Teacher Was Shot in Back of the Head
Late Thursday evening the Montgomery County Police Department released the cause of death of Laura Wallen, the Olney woman who had been missing for nine days. Wallen’s body was found in a shallow grave in Damascus yesterday, and her boyfriend had been arrested and charged with her murder.
According to MCPD, the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner had determined that Wallen was shot in the back of the head. Wallen believed to be four-months pregnant with Tessier’s child.
Earlier today the alleged killer Tyler Lewis Tessier appeared via video link in a Montgomery County courthouse for a bond hearing in front of Judge Zuberi Williams. Tyler did not say anything in court this morning other than stating his name. Audible sighs could be heard from Tessier as Deputy Chief Prosecutor Donna Fenton outline the basics of the Montgomery County Detectives’ charging documents for the First-Degree Murder charge against him.
Fenton said that detectives could point to “hundreds of inconsistencies” in Tessier’s accounting of the disappearance of his girlfriend and his actions since Wallen went missing.
Judge Williams ruled Tessier would not be granted bond, based on the violent nature of the crime and the fact that Tessier was essentially homeless. He had been sleeping at Wallen’s apartment and with another woman to whom detectives later found that Tessier was engaged, as well as another friend, Kris Stiles who lives and has a business at the location in Damascus near to where the Wallen’s body was found.
“He is a monster,” said the slain girl’s father, Mark Wallen after the hearing. “It defies description the awfulness and horror that we have been put through.”
Police believe that Wallen was killed sometime on Sunday, Sept. 3.
According to the charging documents, in this case, Wallen’s sister Jennifer Kadi received texts from Wallen’s iPhone on the morning of Monday, Sept. 4. The messages were the last received from Wallen’s iPhone. The content of the messages was about Wallen believing that Tessier was not the father of the baby.
Police believe that the texts received on Monday were sent by Tessier after he had killed Wallen the day before. Police believe the texts were meant to suggest that the unborn baby was an old boyfriend of Wallen’s named “Antoine.” A person that detectives determined Wallen had not seen in two years and who currently lives in Massachusetts.
The texts read;
“I am like 95 percent sure Tyler is not the father.”
“I’m probably going to lose my job over this.” This text was supposed to refer to Wallen’s job as a high school teacher in Howard County.
“I am going to try and get a hold of Antwan.”
“Tyler is never going to forgive me,” wrote Tessier in the text pretending to be his dead girlfriend, “If he tries to call you, please tell him he’s a great guy because I know I really hurt his feelings.”
Detectives believe that due to the close relationship which Wallen and her sister shared, such information would not have been conveyed via text, but in person. Kadi also told police that she had seen Antoine’s name in Wallen’s iPhone listed spelled Antoine, and Laura would not have misspelled his name.
Despite attempts to deny having any other romantic relationships during interviews with detectives, the charging documents state that “Tessier later admitted to that he is engaged to w woman named Christina Wagoner.” Police say both Wallen and Wagoner knew about each other, but both women believed that Tessier was dating them exclusively.
On Saturday, Sept. 2 Wallen and her sister had the following text message conversation according to court documents;
“Wallen: Tyler has me on an adventure in the country… don’t know why I’m here but it’s for something.
Kadi: Really where are you?
Wallen: I’m waiting in a field
Kadi: Take a picture.”
Wallen did send her sister a photo. “A picture of a large field with a tree line. Investigators have been able to determine that the photo sent to Kadi appeared to be the same field where the clandestine grave was discovered,” said the charging documents.
The field is being the address of Tessier’s friend Kris Stiles’ property at 21415 Prices Distillery Road in Damascus a location which police believe that Tessier had sometimes stayed.
Investigators interviewed Stiles who told detectives that he had been out of town for the Labor Day weekend and no one was at his residence on Prices Distillery Road. The charging documents state, “This would have allowed Tessier access to the property without anyone knowing.”
Tessier had told investigators that he had taken Wallen to a property in the area of Clarksburg near the Frederick County line to show it to her as a property he was attempting to purchase and build a house on for them and the baby, said police.
During one interview with investigators, Tessier admitted that he had “been back to that field at least 10 times” since Wallen has been missing and had looked for her there.
The Prices Distillery Road location is also the location of a business called KS Kuts, at meat processing plant the website calls it “Montgomery County's Newest & Finest Full Service Wild Game Processing Facility.” It is a business where hunters can take their game to be butchered.
“The residence (on Prices Distillery Road) is a farm surrounded by many acres of open fields and woods,” said the charging documents. “The investigation has also revealed that Tessier has been spending a great amount of time at the meat processing plant located on this property during the time that Wallen has been missing.”
Wallen’s remains were found among freshly dug ground in a secluded part of the field on or adjacent to the Prices Distillery Road property, sad police. “The disturbed area of ground was approximately 10 feet by 10 feet in size. Protruding from the disturbed area in plain-view was a purple piece of fabric,” wrote detectives. “It should be noted that during an interview with Tessier he described Wallen as wearing a purple shawl or vest the last time he saw her.”
In court on Thursday, Judge Williams set a preliminary hearing date for Tessier’s trial to be October 13.
After the hearing, Montgomery County’s States’ Attorney John McCarthy addressed reporters saying, “That preliminary hearing date will never come to pass because we will take action and bring this case to the Grand Jury of Montgomery County prior to that date. And the only thing that will happen on that date will be the announcement of an indictment — we hope — of the defendant on the appropriate charges at that time.”
When asked if Tessier would be charged with a second murder as a result of the unborn baby which Wallen was carrying, McCarthy said his office was investigating that possibility. “Based on what we believe the law to be, it is highly unlikely that there will be an additional homicide charge for the death of Laura’s child.”
Top: The fields behind the address on Prices Distillery Road in Damascus where they body of Laura Wallen was discovered on Wednesday by Montgomery County Police detectives.
Next: Tyler Tessier, accused of killing his pregnant girlfriend, Laura Wallen. Photo courtesy MCPD.
Video: After the hearing, Montgomery County’s States’ Attorney John McCarthy addressed reporters.
Next: Laura Wallen, was 31-years-old and worked as a high school teacher at Wilde Lake High School in Howard County. Photo courtesy MCPD.
Video: Laura Wallen’s father, Mark Wallen, addresses the media regarding the press conference held on Monday, Sept. 11 in which his daughter’s accused killer sat with the family and spoke to the press about her disappearance.
Next: Lauran Wallen’s parents address the media after Thursday’s bond hearing.
Next: States’ Attorney John McCarthy addressing reporters on Thursday.
Photos and video by Germantown Pulse.