The U.S. Marshals Lone Star Fugitive Task Force have located the black Jeep Grand Cherokee believed to have been owned by homicide suspect Kaitlin Marie Armstrong in connection with the death of cyclist Moriah Wilson.
Armstrong is wanted on first-degree murder felony charges in connection with the shooting death of Wilson on May 11 in Austin, Texas.
Investigators with the task force learned that Armstrong sold the vehicle May 13 to a CarMax dealership in south Austin for $12,200 US dollars. Armstrong was provided a check from the dealership a day after being questioned by Austin authorities. She departed the Austin airport on May 14, according to an official statement sent to Cyclingnews.
According to multiple warrants in the investigation, a black jeep, believed to be Armstrong's, was observed on surveillance footage travelling toward, and then slowing down, near the residence where Wilson was staying in Austin on the night she was shot.
The following day, Austin Police Department (APD) officers conducted surveillance at the residence of Armstrong and saw Armstrong entering and exiting what they believe to be the same vehicle observed in the surveillance footage at the crime scene.
Authorities had not been able to locate the vehicle again in their search, until now.
U.S. Marshals are assisting the APD homicide investigation with a separate fugitive investigation in the search for Armstrong.
They have elevated the case to a "major case" and are offering up to a $5,000 reward in addition to $1,000 cash reward by the Capital Area Crime Stoppers for information leading to the arrest of Armstrong.
In addition, an anonymous donor is contributing up to $15,000 bringing the total combined reward of up to $21,000.
According to U.S. Marshals' more recent information, Armstrong was at the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport on May 14, three days after the shooting death of Wilson. They believe that she then boarded a flight to Houston Hobby Airport followed by a connecting flight to LaGuardia Airport in New York.
They suggest she was then dropped off at the Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey on May 18, which was a day after APD obtained a warrant for her arrest. However, a search of outbound flights at this airport revealed no reservations had been made under the name Kaitlin Marie Armstrong.
The arrest warrant names Armstrong, 34, as wanted in first-degree felony murder charges and describes her as a white, female, with no additional aliases. U.S. Marshals also described Armstrong as 5’8″ tall and weighing around 125 pounds, with long, curly, light brown hair and hazel eyes.
Cyclingnews has pieced together a timeline of how authorities believe this crime allegedly unfolded, based on legal documents. Cyclingnews will provide additional updates as more information becomes available by authorities throughout this investigation.
Anyone with information on Armstrong’s whereabouts is urged to contact the U.S. Marshals Service Communications Center at 1-800-336-0102 or submit a tip using the USMS Tips app (opens in new tab). Tips may also be sent to the Capital Area Crime Stoppers at 1-800-893-8477.
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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in cycling from the community and grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all men's and women's races including Spring Classics, Grand Tours, World Championships and Olympic Games, and writes and edits news and features. As the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten also coordinates and oversees the global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.