Kaitlin Armstrong's escape plan: Fugitive yoga teacher had a $6,350 nose job, dyed hair to throw off police
Kaitlin Armstrong, 34, returned to the US on July 2 after being arrested in Costa Rica following the death of cycling star Moriah Wilson. Armstrong was charged with the first-degree murder of professional cyclist Wilson in a jealous rage on May 11 in Austin, Texas, over an alleged affair between Wilson and Armstrong’s boyfriend Colin Strickland, who is also a cyclist. Armstrong was arrested at a hostel called Don Jon’s Surf and Yoga Lodge, located in the small town of Santa Teresa on June 29.
According to the authorities, Armstrong was financing her new life in Costa Rica with $12,200 she got from selling her SUV before she fled the United States on May 14. She had been staying in expensive hostel-type accommodation, as reported by Inside Edition. Brandon Filla, Deputy US Marshal, said during a press conference that Armstrong had been trying to establish a yoga career in Costa Rica and her attendance at yoga classes with a fake name helped the authorities to track her.
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"Once she got to Costa Rica, she didn't really move around a lot," he said. "We knew she was gonna be associated with some type of yoga studio. When foreign officials arrived at that yoga studio, they did find a handwritten login that was the same alias that she was going by when she traveled to Costa Rica."
Zachary Paulsen, who witnessed the arrest, told Inside Edition: "She was just asking about how to get around cheaper, and then the police came." Paulsen showed the portal a passport in Armstrong's name that was left behind in a locker after her arrest. He also found a second passport bearing the name of her lookalike sister, Christine along with a $6,350 receipt for cosmetic surgery under another name. "[She had] a bandage on her nose and she had blood in her nostrils," Paulsen said.
“It looks like she retreated back to her hobby, her career of being in the yoga practice. We believe she was trying to learn new yoga, possibly to instruct,” Filla said. The Marshall added, Armstrong had “cropped her hair about shoulder length” and “dyed it dark brown.” “When it was communicated that she was detained and she was in custody, there was a lot of relief in this office."
She is now set for trial at a US court where she faces a murder charge. Wilson’s family said in a statement: “We’re relieved to know this phase of uncertainty is now behind us and we trust that justice will prevail."
Wilson had died of multiple gunshot wounds. Investigators concluded she had been struck several times with a 9mm round - the same caliber of gun Strickland had reportedly purchased for himself and Armstrong. On May 19, Armstrong was charged with first-degree murder, per an affidavit.