Ana Walshe

Missing Woman's Husband Appears in Court: What to Know About the Ana Walshe Case

Brian Walshe appeared in Quincy District Court Monday morning to be arraigned on a charge of misleading investigators

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The 46-year-old husband of missing Cohasset, Massachusetts woman Ana Walshe appeared in court for an arraignment Monday, during which prosecutors said blood and a bloody knife were found in the Walshe family's basement.

Prosecutors also alleged that Brian Walshe lied about his whereabouts to police, and bought hundreds of dollars in cleaning supplies at Home Depot. He has so far been charged with misleading police investigators amid their search for his wife, who was first reported missing last Wednesday.

Prosecutors shared details of why police arrested Brian Walshe in the disappearance of his wife, Ana Walshe, including that they found a bloody knife at their Cohasset, Massachusetts, home, and that he recently bought $450 in cleaning supplies.

Here's what to know about the ongoing search for Ana Walshe, who now hasn't been seen for eight days.

Search for Ana Walshe Gets Underway

Police in Cohasset first announced Walshe was missing on Thursday, with a news release asking for the public's help in finding the woman.

The news release was limited on details, noting that she was last seen at her home shortly after midnight on New Year's Day, and giving a physical description: 5 feet 2 inches tall, 115 pounds, with brown hair, brown eyes and an olive complexion. Her eastern European accent was mentioned, too.

Brian Walshe, 46, has been taken into custody and charged with misleading a police investigation while authorities continue investigating the disappearance of Ana Walshe, the Norfolk County District Attorney's Office announced Sunday. Ana Walshe remains missing.

Cohasset police held a news conference Friday morning to answer questions from news media about the search. Police Chief William Quigley said during the briefing that detectives from multiple agencies were working around the clock amid the search, and divulged more details around the case during questions from reporters.

According to police, Walshe was set to take a ride-share from her home to Logan Airport to catch a flight to D.C. where she worked as a real estate executive. While police say they can confirm she did not board a plane, they had not yet been able to confirm whether or not she got into a ride-share service. She was last reported seen early New Year's Day.

Brian Walshe is charged with misleading police investigating the disappearance of his wife, Ana.

She was reported missing Wednesday by her husband, and police were simultaneously alerted by her employer in Washington D.C. that she had not been seen.

According to police, they have not been able to track an electronic footprint on Walshe since she's been missing.

Cohasset's police chief said the broader community, not just Cohasset, should be on the lookout for Walshe, noting her ties to Washington D.C. and friends "all over the country."

Police in Cohasset said they have been coordinating with authorities in D.C., who searched and found no trace of Walshe at her property there.

Brian Walshe, 46, has been taken into custody and charged with misleading a police investigation while authorities continue investigating the disappearance of Ana Walshe, the Norfolk County District Attorney's Office announced Sunday.

Walshe's husband was said to be fully cooperating with the investigation on Friday.

Friends told NBC10 Boston that Walshe, a wife and mother to three young boys, would not go days without communicating with her family.

Fire Breaks Out at Former Home on Jerusalem Road

A fire broke out shortly after 2 p.m. Friday at the Walshe family's former home on Jerusalem Road in Cohasset. They moved out in April, police said, noting initially that it was too early to say whether the fire was connected to Walshe's disappearance.

Cohasset police have now referred questions about Ana Walshe, the mother of three who went missing on New Year's Day, to the Norfolk District Attorney's Office.

Police said Saturday that investigators had determined the cause of the fire, which originated in the area of damaged piping connected to a natural gas fireplace insert, was accidental, and is not considered suspicious.

No one was injured in the fire. Four people, including a 21-month-old child, safely escaped before firefighters arrived on scene, officials said.

Search for Ana Walshe Continues Over the Weekend

On Saturday, crews were seen searching wooded areas near the Walshe's home. Police said there were 20 troopers from a specialized unit trained in search and rescue operations, as well as three police K9 teams, and a police helicopter involved in the search.

State police divers also searched a small stream and drained the pool at the home, but nothing turned up.

Saturday evening, Cohasset police and Massachusetts State Police released a joint statement, saying that the ground search "will not resume unless police develop new information that so warrants it."

Family members tell police that Ana Walshe left her Cohasset home early New Years Day.

However, the statement continued by saying that authorities were undertaking "various investigative actions" to find Walshe.

By Sunday, investigators were seen going in and out of the home. The Norfolk County District Attorney's Office would only say that the activity was coordinated involving local and state police personnel.

Brian Walshe Arrested

In what appears to be a major departure from Friday's comments by police, authorities announced late Sunday afternoon that Ana Walshe's husband, Brian Walshe, was arrested.

According to the DA's office, Massachusetts State Police and Cohasset police investigating Ana Walshe's disappearance developed probable cause to believe that her husband "had committed the crime of misleading police investigators."

39-year-old Ana Walshe was last seen at her Cohasset home just after midnight on New Year's Day.

Officials did not immediately provide further information about how Brian Walshe allegedly misled police as they search for his missing wife, and the district attorney said they're not expecting to release any other details at this time.

New details on the allegations may be revealed during Walshe's arraignment Monday morning, which is set to happen during the morning session at Quincy District Court.

Brian Walshe's Criminal History

In 2021, Brian Walshe pled guilty to federal fraud charges. According to court documents, investigators believe he took the authentic paintings from a friend and used photographs of them and their documentation to attempt to sell replicas on eBay.

The case started in 2016 when a buyer saw two Andy Warhol paintings for sale on eBay. The listing, according to prosecutors, included photographs of authentication stamps. The buyer arranged to buy those paintings, part of the "Shadows" series, for $80,000. However, after having an assistant pick the paintings up, the buyer discovered there were no authentication stamps and that the canvas looked new. This ultimately led to an FBI investigation.

Brian Walshe had gained access to the paintings by telling a friend, who was the lawful owner of the paintings, that he could help sell them for a good price, the court documents state. However, that friend told investigators that after Brian Walshe took the art, he was unable to contact him. The art in question was valued at hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Police have asked for the public's help in finding Ana Walshe, who was last seen at her home in Cohasset on New Year's Day.

Brian Walshe was arrested in that investigation in 2018. He would ultimately plead guilty to one count each of wire fraud, interstate transportation for a scheme to defraud, possession of converted goods and unlawful monetary transaction.

NBC10 Boston reached out to Brian Walshe's attorney prior to his arrest. Tracy Miner responded Sunday and confirmed she is representing Brian Walshe but said she had no comment.

Neighbors React as Searches Continue

Police were back at the Walshe home on Monday, leaving with bags of evidence and a large black bin in the afternoon. Neighbors say despite what they've heard about the case, they are still hoping for the best outcome.

"It is a shock, it is definitely horrifying, it is not something you ever expect to happen here, such a small quiet town, so it is definitely unexpected, for sure," Shannon Silva told NBC10 Boston.

Silva said she's had police dogs searching her yard, a stream next to it and an SUV that sits on her property in the continued search for the missing mother.

"It has just been crazy, we woke up one day and there were just police out of the house, we had them searching in our yard, the stream over there," she described.

The man who owns the home where the Walshes live said Brian Walshe called him last week asking him if he had surveillance cameras up, adding his wife was missing. 

The landlord, who didn't want to be identified, as he didn't think anything of it at the time. Now, he wonders. 

The landlord added that Brian always paid the family's rent early, and the landlord said he had no idea anything was amiss.

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