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PAULS VALLEY, Okla. (KFOR) – Almost three years after vanishing, the boyfriend of a missing Oklahoma teen has admitted to killing her.

Tanner Washington, KFOR file image

Faith Lindsey, 17, hasn’t been seen since October 2019. 

“I wake up and go to sleep thinking about her. I drive thinking about her,” said Justice Lindsey, Faith’s older sister. “It just definitely feels like something’s missing every day.” 

On Wednesday, the then boyfriend of Faith, Tanner Washington, pleaded guilty to second degree murder. He was arrested in 2019, accused of murdering Lindsey.

“On or about October 27, 2019, I did unlawfully kill Faith Lindsey with malice aforethought,” said Washington in a court record.

The records reveal the evidence appeared to be stacked against Washington. 

Photo goes with story
Faith Lindsey, KFOR file image

According to court documents, the day after the murder Washington told people “Lindsey had been shot in the head” over the weekend. 

Washington also allegedly told an ex-girlfriend “Lindsey was dead, and he was the reason she had been killed.” The ex-girlfriend also said she observed that “Washington had what appeared to be blood on his shoes, pants, and iPhone cellular phone. The documents go on to show that Washington told the girl “it was Lindsey’s blood on those items.” 

Court records also reveal blood samples “discovered on the carpet of the back seat and on a set of sunglasses” in Washington’s old car were found to be “a biological match” to Lindsey’s parents. 

“The evidence seems pretty strong and if he had gone to jury trial and got convicted the judge would have given him life in prison. He would never have gotten out,” explained Ed Blau, a legal expert. “[Pleading guilty] at least gives him an opportunity to see daylight once again before he’s 90 years old.”

The case went to federal court because the crime happened on Native American land.

Despite the admission, the Lindsey’s still don’t have closure because Faith’s body has yet to be found. 

“I just wish he would let us know where she was. That’s the main thing,” said Lindsey. “You know, she deserves a proper funeral, and burial.

Justice Lindsey told KFOR she has no idea why Washington killed her sister but said there were signs of domestic violence in the couple’s relationship. She hopes her sister’s story can serve as a powerful warning for women in a similar situation to do whatever they can to get out.

Washington has not yet been sentenced, but could spend the rest of his life in prison.