Missing teacher’s husband arrested on unrelated charge

Theresa Huyge Lockhart of Portage has been missing since May 18

Christopher and Theresa Lockhart (undated photo)


PORTAGE, Mich. (WOOD) — A Portage man who is considered a person of interest in the disappearance of his wife has been arrested on an unrelated charge, police say.

Christopher Lockhart was arrested Thursday at his home on a charge of malicious destruction of property, Portage Department of Public Safety Senior Deputy Chief John Blue told 24 Hour News 8. Lockhart is expected to be arraigned Friday.

Blue would not comment further on the circumstances that prompted the charge.

Court records filed Wednesday show the specific charge against Lockhart is malicious destruction of a building-less than $200 and that he is also accused of interfering with electronic communications.

The malicious destruction charge is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail. The charge of interfering with electronic communications is a two-year felony.

THE DISAPPEARANCE OF THERESA LOCKHART

Lockhart’s arrest came seven weeks to the day after his wife, 44-year-old Theresa Huyge Lockhart, was last seen on May 18.

Christopher and Theresa Lockhart (undated photo)

She was reported missing two days later by her employer, Schoolcraft Community Schools. Her car was found that same weekend just a couple miles from her home at a park-and-ride off of Angling Road.

Police have called Christopher Lockhart a person of interest in his wife’s disappearance and said the case could become a homicide investigation. Three weeks after she vanished, investigators spent 29 hours searching the couple’s Portage home.

Theresa Lockhart, Christopher Lockhart
Police tape near the Portage home of Theresa and Christopher Lockhart. (June 7, 2017)

Christopher Lockhart told 24 Hour News 8 over the phone on June 3 that he was not involved the the disappearance of his wife.

He said she had struggled with mental health problems and he didn’t report her missing because he “assumed she was going to get herself some help.” He said she had gone off without telling him before. He denied the assertion from police that he wasn’t cooperating in their investigation.

“It’s an attempt to embarrass me and put pressure on me,” he said of that claim.

Christopher Lockhart, 47, has three previous convictions for peeping through windows and one conviction for making obscene phone calls. He was also charged in a domestic violence case involving his wife in November 2016 and pleaded guilty to simple assault.

Neighbors told 24 Hour News 8 they had heard Lockhart shouting at his wife on multiple occasions and that he threatened to kill her at least once.

Anyone with information about where Theresa Lockhart may be is asked to call Portage police at 269.329.4567 or Silent Observer at 269.343.2100.