COHASSET, Mass. -- An arrest warrant charging Brian Walshe with murder was issued Tuesday in the death of his wife Ana Walshe, a Massachusetts mother of three who had been missing since the new year, Norfolk District Attorney Michael Morrissey announced.
An attorney for Brian Walshe declined to comment.
Walshe, 47, pleaded not guilty last week to misleading investigators about his actions and whereabouts around the time his wife went missing. He has been in custody since then.
The arrest warrant comes more than two weeks after Ana Walshe was reported missing by her workplace, spurring investigators to launch a massive search for her whereabouts.
Police have found possible grim evidence: blood and a bloody knife in the basement of the family's Cohasset home, according to prosecutors; Brian Walshe's internet records showing searches for how to dismember and dispose of a body, according to law enforcement sources; and a hacksaw and apparent bloodstains at a trash collection site, law enforcement sources said.
According to police, he told investigators he last saw his wife early January 1 when she left their Cohasset home in a rideshare or taxi to head to the airport and catch a flight to Washington, DC for her real estate job. He said he ran errands for his mother in nearby Swampscott later that day and went for ice cream with one of his children the day after.
However, prosecutors said there was no evidence that Ana Walshe hailed a ride or made it to the airport, and in a criminal affidavit, police said there was no evidence he ran errands for his mother on New Year's Day. Prosecutors did discover surveillance video showing Brian Walshe at a Home Depot buying $450 of cleaning supplies, including mops, a bucket and tarps, in cash on January 2.
The affidavit describes Brian Walshe's statements to police as a "clear attempt to mislead and delay investigators."
WATCH | Husband of missing mother arrested
The charge follows a string of tumultuous legal issues for Brian Walshe.
In 2021, he pleaded guilty to three federal fraud charges related to a 2018 scheme to sell fake Andy Warhol artworks online. He has been on house arrest and monitoring since then as part of his pre-sentence conditions.
Also in 2018, his father Dr. Thomas Walshe died, leading to a protracted legal battle over his estate. In court documents, those close to the family accused Brian Walshe of financial misconduct, described him as an angry and violent person and said he had been diagnosed as a sociopath.
"He had a severe falling out with his son," Andrew Walshe, the executor of the estate, said of Dr. Walshe's relationship with Brian. "Brian had ran off with a significant amount of his money; he had had almost zero contact with Brian R. Walshe over the last ten plus years."
Further, Ana Walshe told police in 2014 someone threatened to "kill (her) and her friend," according to an incident report CNN obtained from the Washington DC Metropolitan Police Department. A spokesperson for the department confirmed that Brian Walshe was the person involved in the report.
The report was filed by Ana Walshe -- then Ana Knipp -- when she resided in DC. The case was later closed because the victim refused to cooperate with the prosecution, the spokesperson said.
The couple's three children, all between the ages of 2 and 6, are in the custody of the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families, a spokesperson said.
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