Teneshia Varner was leaving her husband when she was stabbed to death Aug. 12 in her Beck Road home near Bynum, her mother, Marilyn Collie said Thursday by phone.

Deandre Varner, 34, was arrested and charged with murder in connection with his wife’s stabbing the next day, Aug. 13. On June 3, he made his $100,000 bond and was released, according to records.

“That’s just not right,” Collie said. “You don’t get to commit murder and walk around free still breathing while my daughter is dead.”

Efforts to reach Deandre Varner and his attorney, Jennifer Weems, were unsuccessful Friday.

Teneshia Varner was born April 5, 1983, at Wilford Hall Hospital on the Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, Collie said.

“We moved around a lot and she enjoyed it,” Collie said. “It fit her personality. She could get along with anyone.”

The Collies landed in Oxford and stayed until Varner graduated from Oxford High School in 2001, her mother said. Varner began cheerleading and stuck with it through high school.

“She was incredibly outgoing,” she said.

After graduating high school Varner moved with her mother and father, Charles Collie, to Florida and then to Georgia. It was when they moved to Georgia that Varner got together with Deandre Varner, Collie said.

Teneshia Varner filed for a protection order against Deandre Varner in 2008, according to court documents. In the request, Varner alleged that Deandre Varner threatened to beat and kill her if she didn’t move back to Georgia, where he was living at the time. The order was signed and expired a year later.

The Varners married in 2011, Collie said, and had one daughter together. Teneshia Varner had two daughters before she married Deandre Varner, her mother said.

“All three are with us now and I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world,” she said. “The only place safer they could be is with her.”

Deandre Varner was arrested and charged with distribution of a crack cocaine to an undercover agent in September 2013 by the Talladega County Sheriff’s Office, according to court documents.

“When all his trouble started that’s when they separated,” Collie said. “She was in the process of finding a new job that paid better because she was about to be a single mother.”

When Varner was charged with murder, his bond was revoked in the drug case, according to records. He pleaded guilty to the charge May 10 and was sentenced to two years of supervised probation, according to court records.  

Three weeks later, Varner made his $100,000 surety bond.

“I thought if he had one strike against him already he didn’t get a bond,” Collie said. “With the severity of this crime and the fact that he fled after, he shouldn’t be allowed to have a bond. I think there is a flaw in the system.”

Collie said when she heard Varner was free on bond, she went into a protective mode.

“My heart dropped,” she said. “I have to put myself aside and think about her girls. They don’t need to know he’s out and they don’t need to have sleepless nights worrying about him. Let the grown folks worry.”

Each day, Collie said, she talks to her daughter like she did before her death. In each of Collie’s notebooks, in frames on her desk, in her purse and her wallet there is a photo of Varner.

“She will not be forgotten,” she said unwavering. “We are putting an advertisement in the paper to let the community know we haven’t forgotten her and he is free. We’re still watching and he still has to pay for what he was done.”


​Staff writer Kirsten Fiscus: 256-235-3563. On Twitter @kfiscus_star.