FAYETTE COUNTY, Pa. — Police confirm Tommy Teets is sitting in the Fayette County Jail after they spent most of Thursday questioning him at the police barracks.
Sources say Teets led police right to Leah Owens’ body, and now her family is left wondering why she’s dead.
Blood stains, a knife and DNA evidence led police to Teets, of Dawson, who they believe is responsible for Owens’ death.
Owens, who has two children, had been missing in Fayette County for weeks. On Thursday, police charged Teets with her murder.
Sources confirm Owens’ body was found in a wooded area in Dunbar Township outside of Connellsville. That location has now been secured by police as this investigation plays out.
Only Channel 11 was there as police walked Teets out in handcuffs. He didn't have anything to say.
Police paperwork states Teets was last spotted driving Owens’ 2007 Ford Explorer with her, the same day she disappeared.
His family members say they noticed several injuries to his hands and even saw him covered in blood.
Teets is being held without bail.
An arrest has been made in the case of a Fayette County mother of two who has been missing since September.
Thomas Teets, a suspect in the disappearance of 31-year-old Leah Owens, is charged with criminal homicide, aggravated assault, robbery, theft by unlawful taking, abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence.
The 32-year-old was arraigned Thursday morning and was still being questioned later Thursday afternoon at the Pennsylvania State Police barracks in Uniontown.
Owens’ mother, Camilla Crosby, told police that she last saw her daughter at her house Sept. 15.
Crosby said Owens arrived at the house about 3:30 a.m. in her SUV, which was driven by Teets, and said she needed $80 so that Teets wouldn’t take it, according to a criminal complaint. Crosby said her daughter left with Teets after she gave her the money, but later returned and asked for a blank check.
Crosby told police she did not give her daughter a check, and that was the last time she saw her.
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When Owens called her sister asking for $150 because she was in trouble, her sister eventually agreed to have the money wired to a Walmart in Mount Pleasant. That's the last place Owens was seen.
Her family told Channel 11 News they knew something was wrong when she didn’t show up for a fundraiser for her mother, who has cancer, and reported her missing.
Teets was interviewed on Sept. 20 and claimed he was dropped off at his home by Owens on Sept. 15 and he hadn’t seen her since, police said.
On Sept. 23, the father of Teets’ ex-girlfriend contacted police to let them know that Teets had borrowed a shovel and rake from him Sept. 16 and “appeared to be anxious and worked up,” the complaint said.
During an interview with Teets’ stepfather, investigators were told that on Sept. 15 Teets returned home “in Owens’ vehicle and walked into the kitchen/living room area covered in blood” with his shirt wrapped around his hand, the complaint said. Teets said he had cut his hand on some metal.
State police found Owens’ SUV in late September in a remote field outside of Connellsville. Blood belonging to Owens and Teets was found in the SUV, as well as on a knife, the complaint said.
Hundreds of volunteers have helped search for Leah.
Investigators said Teets admitted to his mother that he killed Owens, telling her, “Yes, but I promise it was in self-defense,” the complaint said.
A search warrant was executed at Teets’ mother’s home. Police said the keys to Owens’ SUV were found in a vent and that three items of clothing that appeared to be stained with blood were seized.
Channel 11 also learned Teets allegedly confessed to a friend on the phone, telling him he was scared and "she's gone." He allegedly said he lost his mind and kept stabbing Owens, adding, "they don't got no body, there will be no case."
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