Montgomery County State's Attorney John McCarthy holds a press conference with Assistant State’s Attorneys Donna Fenton (left) and Mary Herdman (right) on the indictment of Tyler Tessier in the murder of Laura Wallen. PHOTO BY GLYNIS KAZANJIAN A suspect indicted for the murder of his girlfriend cannot be charged for the death of her unborn child due to Maryland law, according to State’s Attorney John McCarthy.
After finding the body of Laura Wallen, 31, in a shallow grave on farmland in Damascus, police arrested Tyler Tessier Sept. 13 on charges which included first-degree murder. A grand jury indicted Tessier on one count of murder Thursday. However, he will not be charged in the death of Wallen’s unborn child due to state law, McCarthy said at a press conference in Rockville on Friday.
“Her child was autopsied, “McCarthy said. “A medical team established at the time of Ms. Wallen’s murder the child was fourteen weeks old. Based on medical testimony, the child was not viable independent of Ms. Wallen. Based on those medical findings, and as a matter of law in Maryland, as a result the defendant is not chargeable with a second count of murder related to the child.”
McCarthy confirmed Wallen died from a gunshot wound to the back of her head.