The body of missing Georgia teen Téa Choates was discovered in a wooded area Tuesday and now her fiancé, Aldeyshaun Locklear, 18, is in police custody.
According to People, Locklear confessed to strangling Choates, who was 19 and three months pregnant, before burying her body in the woods near her Lithonia home following an argument. Relatives first reported Choates missing on August 6. Her grief-stricken mother, Ebony King, said that she begged her daughter to leave Locklear and join her in Florida in the months leading up to her murder due to the couple’s history of domestic violence. King runs a home for girls who are survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking. According to King, Choates thought about leaving but ultimately decided against it.
“She loved him,” King told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “She wanted to stay, no matter what I would say to her. She really just wanted the family.”
“Téa’s biggest thing was she would say, ‘I could change him, I can help him,’” King said. “That’s how her heart was built … but you can’t love a person hard enough to change.”
King tells the paper that she and her husband confronted Locklear over instances of domestic violence as recently as March. The teen promised to change and do right by their daughter.
Locklear is facing counts of felony murder, aggravated assault related to strangulation and concealing a death. Requests for bond have been denied. The medical examiner has next yet to determine a cause of death.
Relatives have put together a Go Fund Me campaign to cover the costs of Choates’ funeral.