Woman wanted for alleged murder of elite cyclist who had relationship with her boyfriend, authorities say
Hannah Sarisohn, CNN
(CNN) — Authorities are searching for a Texas woman accused of murdering an elite cyclist who allegedly dated her boyfriend.
The US Marshals Service is conducting a fugitive investigation into the whereabouts of Kaitlin Marie Armstrong, 34, who is wanted on a first-degree murder charge in connection with the fatal shooting of 25-year-old Anna Moriah Wilson on May 11.
Anyone with information about where Armstrong might be is urged to contact authorities, the Marshals Service said in a news release last Friday.
Wilson, who lived in San Francisco, was in Austin, Texas, for a cycling race when she was shot multiple times at the home of a friend she was staying with, according to an arrest affidavit filed in Travis County District Court.
The affidavit described how both the victim and the suspect had been in romantic relationships with the same man, and detailed text messages and interviews with tipsters pointing to jealousy as a possible motive.
On the day of the murder, Wilson had gone out for an afternoon swim with Colin Strickland, a fellow professional cyclist she’d been dating on and off since last fall, according to the affidavit. During that time, Strickland was living with Armstrong, his girlfriend.
Strickland told police he began his romantic relationship with Wilson during a two-week period when he was separated from Armstrong, according to the affidavit. Strickland maintained his relationship with Wilson after resuming his relationship with Armstrong, per the affidavit, and admitted to trying to hide his communications with her from Armstrong by changing Wilson’s name in his phone and deleting texts.
It’s unclear if Wilson and Strickland were still in a romantic relationship at the time of her death.
Armstrong had contacted Wilson several times and in one instance told her to “stay away” from Strickland, one of Wilson’s friends told investigators, according to the affidavit.
Strickland considered Wilson to be one of the best cyclists in the world, he told police, and a VeloNews feature published on the day of her death called her “the winningest woman in the American off-road scene.” Wilson had won a series of races in California this spring, the article notes, before traveling to Austin.
Multiple law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation obtained security camera footage that captured Armstrong’s car near the house before Wilson’s body was found, according to the affidavit.
Within 24 hours of Wilson’s death, officers from the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force apprehended Armstrong in connection with an unrelated arrest warrant and spoke to her. However, Austin Police then said they learned Armstrong’s arrest warrant was not valid and told her she was free to leave.
Armstrong requested to end the interview and left after detectives began confronting her about the security camera video that placed her car near the crime scene, the affidavit states.
Ballistic evidence found at the scene of the killing was compared to bullets test-fired from a firearm Strickland had purchased for Armstrong, according to the affidavit. The test showed “the potential that the same firearm was involved is significant,” the document says.