Portage man named person of interest in wife’s disappearance

Christopher and Theresa Lockhart (undated photo)

PORTAGE, Mich. (WOOD) — Police say a Portage man has been named a person of interest in the disappearance of his wife, six months after he was accused of assaulting her.

Christopher Lockhart, 47, is not cooperating with police in the investigation into the whereabouts of 44-year-old Theresa Huyge Lockhart. Police on Friday said they were “heading towards a homicide investigation” in her disappearance and investigators now believe she is dead.

Theresa, a Spanish teacher at Schoolcraft Community Schools, was reported missing on Saturday, May 20 by school officials after she didn’t show up for work. Her car was found that same weekend just a couple miles from her home at a park-and-ride off of Angling Road.

She was last seen on May 18 around 5 p.m. while working out at a gym and last posted on social media around 8 p.m., police said. Christopher Lockhart told police he last saw Theresa leaving their house in Portage that night around 10 p.m. He has never allowed police to search the home.

“His behavior is extremely unusual,” said Portage Department of Public Safety Chief John Blue. “It wouldn’t be what you would expected of someone that [was] told that their spouse is missing and there’s no proof of life or no contact. It definitely raised some eyebrows at that point.”

Police conducted aerial and K-9 searches near the park-and-ride and in the Lockharts’ neighborhood, but have not found any sign of Theresa, who is from Grand Rapids but moved to the Kalamazoo area when she got married. Investigators said they are reviewing possible surveillance video in the case but wouldn’t talk about the specific evidence they’ve gathered.

24 Hour News 8 pulled court records that show a domestic violence case against Christopher Lockhart in November of 2016 where Theresa was listed as the victim. A no-contact order was issued against him but but Theresa eventually asked the court to remove it. Christopher Lockhart later pled guilty to simple assault and the case was dismissed in February.

Christopher Lockhart also pleaded guilty to peeping tom and obscene phone call charges in 1990 in South Carolina, according to records.

In 2001, he also pleaded guilty to window peeping and disorderly conduct in Kalamazoo County.

Numerous police searches have turned up nothing and the searches organized by friends for this weekend have been cancelled.

Anyone with information is urged to call Portage police at 269.329.4567 or Silent Observer at 269.343.2100.

–24 Hour News 8’s Barton Deiters contributed to this story.