Charges upgraded against man accused in murder of woman, unborn child
BATON ROUGE - Baton Rouge Police have upgraded charges brought against a man accused in connection with the possible murder of a pregnant school administrator whose badly decomposed body was found near Grosse Tete earlier this week.
39-year-old Robert Marks originally faced charges of aggravated kidnapping and child desertion, but now he’ll face charges of first degree murder and first degree feticide after the coroner identified the body as that of the missing woman, 40-year-old Lyntell Washington. Police have noted that Marks has "shown no emotion" while in their custody this week. While a murder weapon has yet to be found, police said they felt confident enough in the evidence presented to level the additional charges against Marks.
Marks had been behind bars since the woman’s 3-year-old child was located wandering alone in a parking lot close to where the woman’s abandoned vehicle was found with blood inside.
After the child was found, active search parties were dispatched to attempt to track down Washington who remained missing through the weekend until the body of an unidentified woman was found in a sugar cane field by workers on Tuesday morning. Washington was a teacher at a Baton Rouge middle school at the time of her death. Marks was employed as assistant principal at the same school, and it was revealed during the investigation that they were romantically involved. Washington was also 7 months pregnant with the man’s child, according to investigators.
The EBR Coroner brought the body back to Baton Rouge where an autopsy was performed, but initial results were inconclusive other than determining that the woman was pregnant at the time of her death and had died from a gunshot wound to the head. Dental records on Thursday revealed that the body belonged to the missing woman. Detectives waited until Friday morning to question Marks now that Washington’s remains have been identified.
The 3-year-old that was found in the parking lot, leading to the initial arrest of Marks, has said that the man “hurt her mother” and said she was “now sleeping” as a result. The child described a violent incident between Marks and Washington.