June 20, 2017
Email: Teresa Halbach Once Loved Ryan Hillegas, He Was Still 'Checking Her Out'

While some questions about Teresa Halbach's ex-boyfriend are still unanswered, an email she allegedly sent to a friend may shed some light on her true relationship with Ryan Hillegas.

Halbach emailed a friend that Ryan had come to the house she shared with Scott Bloedorn before she was killed and was "checking her out."

"I always know when he's checking me out," Halbach wrote to a person named Meggan.

Making a Murderer fans know Ryan Hillegas as the man who dated Teresa Halbach on and off for five years. It is not clear whether he initially told police the true nature of that relationship. Investigators reportedly never asked for his alibi for October 31, 2005, so law enforcement may not have known he was her ex-lover when she went missing.

Hillegas testified at Steven Avery's trial that he and Halbach once dated but remained friends. He is also the one who led searches for Teresa, randomly guessed her Cingular Wireless password to retrieve her cell phone records off the internet, and was giving press interviews about the investigation.

Emerging as the person closest to Halbach at the time of her death, Hillegas also testified that Teresa's relationship with Bloedorn was not sexual and that they were "just roommates." It isn't known if Hillegas was aware that Bloedorn and Halbach were involved in a sexual relationship when he testified to the opposite. It is anyone's guess. He may have simply forgotten that his best friend was involved with Teresa, a relationship Avery's attorney Kathleen Zellner learned about through a married photography client with whom Halbach had an affair. The attorney claims Hillegas lied about his and Bloedorn's true connection to Halbach to disassociate himself because Ryan is the real killer.

If Halbach was killed by a spurned ex-boyfriend, could it be that he had discovered the woman he was pursuing was looking for love in other places? The answer may lie in subsequent lines of the email.

Halbach was looking for romance, according to the message. She wanted to love someone the way she once loved Ryan.

"It gets me thinking - how was it that this guy held my interest for so long and I allowed myself to love him so much but nothing has come up since?" the message says.

"Not that I am wanting to get back together with him, but I would like to feel that way about someone again."
But, Teresa Halbach would never get that chance. Former Calumet County District Attorney Ken Kratz claimed she was raped, killed, and mutilated by Avery and Brendan Dassey. Both men were sentenced to life in prison, Avery without parole. Dassey's conviction was thrown out last year but he remains imprisoned in Portage, Wisconsin.
Zellner believes a plot to frame Avery started with Ryan Hillegas and that he was a more viable suspect from the beginning. Zellner claims a jealous Hillegas likely beat Halbach to death and duped unsuspecting Manitowoc County Sheriff's deputies into helping him get away with it.

Kratz, Manitowoc County officials and the Wisconsin Attorney General deny allegations of a coverup. Ryan Hillegas cannot be reached for comment.

[Featured Image by Morry Gash-Pool/AP Images]