Kaitlin Armstrong, wanted for murder of Moriah Wilson, apprehended in Costa Rica
US Marshal’s office reveal that Armstrong was captured in a hostel and will be deported to face first-degree murder charges.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
Kaitlin Armstrong, the Texas woman wanted in the shooting death of Moriah Wilson, is now in police custody.
U.S. Marshals officials confirmed to VeloNews that Armstrong was apprehended by authorities in Costa Rica overnight.
“She was captured yesterday in Costa Rica,” a spokesman from the U.S. Marshals office said.
The U.S. Marshals Office of International Operations, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Department of State Diplomatic Security Service, working with authorities in Costa Rica, located and arrested Armstrong on June 29 at a hostel on Santa Teresa Beach in Provincia de Puntarenas.
Armstrong, 34, will be deported and returned to the U.S. where she will face first-degree murder charges.
Armstrong, who has been on the run following the May 11 shooting of Wilson in Austin, Texas, is currently in police custody in Costa Rica.
Authorities discovered that Armstrong, using a fraudulent passport, boarded United Airlines Flight 1222 from Newark International Airport on May 18 and arrived in San Jose, Costa Rica that evening.
Sources say she had undergone plastic surgery.
The search for Armstrong dates back to May 17 when a warrant was issued for her arrest in Wilson’s murder.
Armstrong, whose vehicle was seen at the scene of the crime, was questioned by Austin city police on May 12 in relation to the murder investigation, but was released due to a discrepancy with her date of birth in their computer system.
When Texas authorities issued a warrant for Armstrong’s arrest on May 17, the 34-year-old had already fled the area. Surveillance video spotted her boarding flights from Austin to Houston and then to New York on May 14. Authorities believed she may have been traveling under a fake name.
Armstrong was last known to have been seen at Newark’s Liberty airport on May 18, a day after Austin police issued the homicide warrant for her arrest.
Last week, authorities revealed that Armstrong sold a black Jeep Grand Cherokee to an Austin, Texas, car dealer for $12,200 one day before she fled the state. Similar vehicles are being sold for close to $30,000, and authorities believe she used the cash to hatch her escape.
Law enforcement authorities had recently widened their search, charging Armstrong with a federal crime of unlawful flight to avoid prosecution and upping the cash reward.
Once back in the United States, Armstrong could face several charges, including first-degree murder, though final charges have not been filed yet.
Armstrong’s apprehension will close one chapter in a heartbreaking story that has ripped through the tightly knit gravel cycling scene and made international headlines.
Wilson, 25, was one of American off-road racing’s rising stars, and her tragic death provoked an outpouring of support and sympathy from across the cycling community. She was recently honored in a celebration of life in her hometown of East Burke, Vermont, and other memorials have been held from Austin to San Francisco to New York City.
The Wilson family issued the following statement to VeloNews on Thursday afternoon:
We’d like to thank the Austin Police Department, Detective Spitler, Jacqueline Berrelleza, the U.S. Marshalls, and all other parties and individuals involved for their diligence in locating and apprehending Kaitlin Armstrong. We’re relieved to know this phase of uncertainty is now behind us, and we trust that justice will prevail. We’d like to ask for the media to respect our privacy at this time, as they have over the last six weeks.