TX - Moriah Wilson, Cyclist Fatally Shot Before Race, Austin, #3

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SMK777

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KA went to the apartment to confront MW, and forgot the gun was loaded? She meant to just threaten MW, but the gun went off by mistake? She regularly carries a loaded weapon in her purse, and it accidentally went off when she knocked at the door and MW suddenly opened it?
Right, and she shot her multiple times, didn’t call 911, left her there to die. Then took unlawful flight.
 

SMK777

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Yes, I think he will provide the best defense available to KA, and so justice will be served, regardless of the level of charge and the outcome.
I hope justice will be served for Moriah and her family, most of all. To me, manslaughter charges as defined by the penal code would be a travesty of justice.
 
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RickshawFan

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She can of course try. But IMO hard to prove once you fraudulently use a passport to leave the country and go to extremes to alter your appearance. I think most jurors would wonder why she never applied for a protective order if that were the case.
I'm not sure you'd want to apply for a protective order if you'd just murdered someone.
 

Sundog

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I hope justice will be served for Moriah and her family, most of al. To me, manslaughter charges as defined by the penal code would be a travesty of justice.

Agree, justice needs to be served for the crime committed, but all defendants need to have a chance to plead their case when the state brings charges against them. So I would want all defendants to have the best legal defense available to them and then trust the sytem to work for all involved.

I, too, would be surprised if manslaughter was on the table, but if the judge offers this possibility to the jury based on the evidence presented, then it will be because of the legal issues involved and then I don't think it would be a travesty of justice.
 
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Seattle1

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July 6. 2022

AUSTIN – The United States Marshals Service will hold a press conference Thursday afternoon to announce to capture and return of murder suspect Kaitlin Armstrong in Austin, according to a release.

On Tuesday, the Austin Police Department announced that Armstrong, 34, was arrested and booked into Travis County Jail for murder and theft of service. She is currently being held with a $3.5 million bond for murder and a $3,500 bond for theft of service.

[..]

According to authorities, sources informed them on May 18 Armstrong had been taken to Newark Liberty International Airport with a “fraudulent passport, had boarded United Airlines Flight 1222 from Newark International Airport at 5:09 p.m. EST on May 18 and arrived in San Jose, Costa Rica, at 8:27 p.m. EST.”

Officials say investigators searched all outbound flights at Newark Airport but didn’t find any with Armstrong’s name.

[..]

Susan Pamerleau with the U.S. Marshal for the Western District of Texas said the Marshals Service elevating Armstrong’s case “likely played a key role in her capture after a 43-day run,” she said. “This is an example of combining the resources of local, state, federal and international authorities to apprehend a violent fugitive, bring an end to that run and hopefully a sense of closure to the victim’s family.”
 

SMK777

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Agree, justice needs to be served for the crime committed, but all defendants need to have a chance to plead their case when the state brings charges against them. So I would want all defendants to have the best legal defense available to them and then trust the sytem to work for all involved.

I, too, would be surprised if manslaughter was on the table, but if the judge offers this possibility to the jury based on the evidence presented, then it will because of the legal issues involved and then I don't think it would be a travesty of justice.
Well, she really did shoot MW intentionally, multiple times. That’s murder, and why she’s charged with it. I guess I don’t see her as any different than Jodi Arias, legally.

Of course as a defendant she deserves and has a right to a good defense. Psychologically speaking, I try not to dwell too deeply on her, because then there’s the danger of feeling almost too sorry for her, for various reasons.
 

Sundog

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She's not the only one that was placed at the scene. In fact the one who purchased the gun and the ammo (and even called it "kill ammunition") was also placed at the scene at that time. If being there with a vehicle around the time of the murder while having access to the murder weapon means your guilty,I' you can see how that's problematic as that applies to more than just the person currently charged and as such could be a reason for there to be a plea.

I am sure the defense team is looking closely at all of this information.
 

SMK777

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I am sure the defense team is looking closely at all of this information.
Is it possible for her defense attorney — who is considered a “hitter” and one of the best in the country — to tell the jury that CS is the murderer, regardless of the fact that the prosecution, the Austin police, and the US Marshals don’t view him as such. Serious question.
 

Sundog

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KA went to the apartment to confront MW, and forgot the gun was loaded? She meant to just threaten MW, but the gun went off by mistake? She regularly carries a loaded weapon in her purse, and it accidentally went off when she knocked at the door and MW suddenly opened it?

Do we know if KA was aware that CS wasn't in the apartment with MW at that point? If she didn't know and thought they were still together, could it be argued that she went to the apartment to confront CS, but he wasn't there, and an argument between KA and MW ensued? KA would still be guilty of killing MW, but not of premeditation, perhaps.
 

Seattle1

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In the latest article posted here it said she’s charged with stalking and murdering Wilson:

The former yoga instructor is accused of stalking and killing Wilson on May 11, according to an Austin murder warrant.
^^rsbbm

Actually, the article says that according to the arrest warrant, she's accused of stalking and killing, not that she's been charged.

There might be a new warrant since 5/19 but the copy I have is only for Felony Murder-1.

The former yoga instructor is accused of stalking and killing Wilson on May 11, according to an Austin murder warrant. Police alleged that her Jeep Grand Cherokee appeared on surveillance video near the crime scene moments before the slaying.

 

jash

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She's not the only one that was placed at the scene. In fact the one who purchased the gun and the ammo (and even called it "kill ammunition") was also placed at the scene at that time. If being there with a vehicle around the time of the murder while having access to the murder weapon means your guilty, you can see how that's problematic as that applies to more than just the person currently charged and as such could be a reason for there to be a plea.

Fortunately there is technology to make it clear who was where and when.

CS and MW left the burger place and drove directly to where MW was staying. CS was recorded leaving, and one minute later MW (presumably) unlocks the door to her friend's apartment. A minute after that, KA shows up. CS arrives back in his neighborhood at the expected time after dropping MW off. There is no material time unaccounted for (in an earlier post I linked to Google maps and noted the expected time for all the trips aligned with LE's timeline).

From the warrant affidavit:

8:16 PM Strickland and Wilson leave the parking lot of Pool Burger on Strickland's motorcycle
8:26 PM Armstrong's vehicle drives northbound on Maple Ave and then westbound on East 18th St
[this is right near where MW is staying]
8:35 PM Strickland drives northbound through the alleyway, north of East 18th St, on his motorcycle
[this is CS leaving MW]
8:36 PM The unique code given to Wilson is used to unlock Cash's door to her residence
8:37 PM Armstrong's vehicle appears to stop next to Cash's residence
8:48 PM - Strickland drives southbound in the 4900 block of 1-35 SB frontage road, approximately miles from Cash's residence
[this is CS arriving back home]
 

jash

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Do we know if KA was aware that CS wasn't in the apartment with MW at that point? If she didn't know and thought they were still together, could it be argued that she went to the apartment to confront CS, but he wasn't there, and an argument between KA and MW ensued? KA would still be guilty of killing MW, but not of premeditation, perhaps.

From the timeline in the affidavit I just posted above, I believe KA was already nearby waiting and I can't imagine she wouldn't have at least heard CS leaving on his bike (usually they're not exactly quiet). I think seeing/hearing him drive off is what prompted her to park and go when she did. A two minute difference only -- that is quite a coincidence.
 

SMK777

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Fortunately there is technology to make it clear who was where and when.

CS and MW left the burger place and drove directly to where MW was staying. CS was recorded leaving, and one minute later MW (presumably) unlocks the door to her friend's apartment. A minute after that, KA shows up. CS arrives back in his neighborhood at the expected time after dropping MW off. There is no material time unaccounted for (in an earlier post I linked to Google maps and noted the expected time for all the trips aligned with LE's timeline).

From the warrant affidavit:

8:16 PM Strickland and Wilson leave the parking lot of Pool Burger on Strickland's motorcycle
8:26 PM Armstrong's vehicle drives northbound on Maple Ave and then westbound on East 18th St
[this is right near where MW is staying]
8:35 PM Strickland drives northbound through the alleyway, north of East 18th St, on his motorcycle [this is CS leaving MW]
8:36 PM The unique code given to Wilson is used to unlock Cash's door to her residence
8:37 PM Armstrong's vehicle appears to stop next to Cash's residence
8:48 PM - Strickland drives southbound in the 4900 block of 1-35 SB frontage road, approximately miles from Cash's residence
[this is CS arriving back home]
This is why the murder warrant went out on Armstrong and not Strickland.
 

SMK777

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^^rsbbm

Actually, the article says that according to the arrest warrant, she's accused of stalking and killing, not that she's been charged.

There might be a new warrant since 5/19 but the copy I have is only for Felony Murder-1.

The former yoga instructor is accused of stalking and killing Wilson on May 11, according to an Austin murder warrant. Police alleged that her Jeep Grand Cherokee appeared on surveillance video near the crime scene moments before the slaying.

Thanks for this clarification. Understood and appreciated.
 

Sundog

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From the timeline in the affidavit I just posted above, I believe KA was already nearby waiting and I can't imagine she wouldn't have at least heard CS leaving on his bike (usually they're not exactly quiet). I think seeing/hearing him drive off is what prompted her to park and go when she did. A two minute difference only -- that is quite a coincidence.
Do we have the time of each of the texts that CS sent to KA? It would be good to know how they fit into this timeline.

Also, would KA necessarily know that CS had just dropped off MW at the apartment, or if she saw/heard his motorcycle leaving the residence as she pulled up nearby, could she have thought that he just left the apartment after spending time there with MW?

All this is not to excuse KA of the killing of MW, but to note how it could have affected her state of mind.
 

WingsOverTX

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Do we have the time of each of the texts that CS sent to KA? It would be good to know how they fit into this timeline.

Also, would KA necessarily know that CS had just dropped off MW at the apartment, or if she saw/heard his motorcycle leaving the residence as she pulled up nearby, could she have thought that he just left the apartment after spending time there with MW?

All this is not to excuse KA of the killing of MW, but to note how it could have affected her state of mind.
BBM
In timeline quoted below at 8:36, 8:43 & 9:21
I’m assuming from all I’ve read, that KA simply shot MW and fled. Reports say the roommate found Wilson unconscious on the bathroom floor, bleeding from multiple gunshot wounds, called 911 and tried to administer cpr while she waited for EMT to arrive.

Police also attempted cpr but EMT pronounced her dead at the scene.

She must have clung to life before the roommate came home, and slightly after. It was nearly 1 1/2 hours from the shooting, to the roommate’s arrival.

@Howl Here is the timeline:

Late afternoon, May 11:
Wilson texts the friend at whose home she was staying to say she is going to go swimming with Colin. The friend goes home (#1 on map) “to speak with Wilson about her going out with Colin.” The affidavit does not specify whether this friend is the same woman who later told police that she knew Armstrong had warned Wilson to stay away from Strickland.

5:30 p.m.: Wilson’s host leaves the apartment to go to dinner with other friends. On the way out, she sees that Wilson has left a bike travel bag on the porch outside the second-floor unit. She briefly goes back inside to remind Wilson to bring it in.

5:45: Strickland’s estimation of the time he arrived on his motorcycle to take Wilson to the pool.

5:55: The keypad at the friend’s home registers that it has been locked.
Evening: Strickland and Wilson are at Deep Eddy swimming pool (#2 on map) and then at adjacent Pool Burger.

8:16: Strickland and Wilson leave Pool Burger on his motorcycle.

8:26: A vehicle identified as Armstrong’s Jeep Grand Cherokee is seen driving around the block where Wilson is staying.

8:36: The keypad at the friend’s home registers Wilson’s entry code.

8:36: Strickland stops at the end of the alley after dropping off Wilson and sends Armstrong a text message telling her he is on his way home. He does not say he has been with Wilson, instead claiming he had been to drop off some flowers for a friend of the couple’s and that his phone had died.

8:37: Armstrong’s Jeep is seen on a street next to Wilson’s friend’s home.

Between 8:30 and 9:30: Wilson’s friend’s landlord, who lives in the larger home on the property, goes into the garage, which is beneath the rental unit. While he is there, he hears what he believes is someone running down the stairs from the apartment to the alley. From beneath the partly raised garage door, he sees a bicyclist southbound in the alley. (The only item later determined to be missing from the apartment is Wilson’s bike. It is found concealed in vegetation about 20 yards south.)

8:43: Strickland’s estimation of the time he arrived at his home in the East Congress neighborhood (#3 on map), about 7 miles from Wilson’s friend’s home. (Surveillance video from a nearby car dealership indicates he passed by a few minutes later, at 8:48.) Around that time, he said, he sent Armstrong a second text.

9:21: Strickland sends Armstrong a third text message. Shortly after that, he told police, she drove up in the Jeep.

9:54: Wilson’s friend returns home. The bike travel bag is now at the bottom of the stairs, and the apartment door is unlocked. Inside she finds Wilson on the bathroom floor covered in blood.

9:56: Wilson’s friend calls 911 and begins performing CPR.

10:10: Wilson is pronounced dead after police arrive.

 

Sundog

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BBM
In timeline quoted below at 8:36, 8:43 & 9:21
So according to the timeline, KA receives a text message from CS at the same time that MW unlocks the door to her apartment upon returning from outing with CS, and the text says that his cell phone had died and he couldn't call her but he had gone to deliver some flowers to a friend of theirs. Meanwhile, KA is parked outside of MW's apartment and CS just dropped her off and so KA most likely knows that CS is lying and saw his motorcycle drive off or heard it.
 
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