Husband charged after woman found dead along Crow Wing County highway

Tony McClelland is charged with murder in his wifes death. (FOX 9)

The husband of a woman found dead along a highway in northern Minnesota last month has been charged with her murder.

Tony McClelland, 47, is charged with second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, and two counts of criminal vehicular homicide in the case.

McClelland was arrested this past Monday, two weeks after his wife Angela McClelland was found near the intersection of Legend Road and Killian Road on June 25 -- just steps from Highway 371 and a short distance from her home off Crow Wing Lake.

According to the criminal complaint, Angela McClelland's body was discovered along the highway around 5:41 a.m.  While deputies were working to identify her, Angela's daughter called authorities to report her mother was missing. Speaking with the daughter, deputies say they learned Angela had been with Tony at a birthday party the night before. Other witnesses told investigators that the couple had arrived in the early evening and stayed until around 2 a.m.

Deputies then went to question Tony McClelland. "When asked if [Tony] knew why officers were there, [Tony] said ‘yup’ and then proceeded to vent about how [Angela] had ‘thrown a hissy fit… just like every other f---king day,’" the criminal complaint reads.

Tony confirmed to deputies that he had gone with Angela to the party and had driven her home in their Ford Explorer. On the way home, the charges state that Tony claimed the couple had gotten into an argument that ended with Tony leaving Angela on Matte Road – less than three miles from where she was found dead. Tony claimed he didn't realize Angela hadn't made it back home until he woke up the next morning.

However, when deputies searched the Explorer, the charges state they found evidence of blood and tissue in several spots under the vehicle along with a strand of hair.

When asked about the blood, deputies say Tony responded by saying "[Angela] was being belligerent and he was worried she would put him in the ditch." The charges state deputies then asked if the blood found on the vehicle would match Angela's to which Tony responded: "I couldn’t tell ya if it will be her blood."

As the charges detail, DNA testing of the blood did come back to match Angela's DNA. The complaint also cites GPS location data that seems to contradict Tony's story. Deputies say the GPS data shows the Ford Explorer stopping on Legend Lane just south of Killian Road. At that spot, deputies say the Explorer backed up at about 20 mph to the spot where Angela's body was found and stopped again.

After that, deputies say the Explorer speeds away southbound from the area where Angela was found dead, at points reaching speeds over 100 miles per hour, before returning to their home on Sleepy Hollow Road – a half mile from the crime scene.

Tony McClelland is being held on $1 million bail in Crow Wing County Jail.