This story just gets wilder every update…
In case you’ve missed this shocking true crime saga, we’ll give you a quick recap: Kaitlin Armstrong, a yoga instructor from Austin, Texas, quickly became the prime suspect in the murder of a romantic rival. Authorities believe a professional cyclist named Moriah “Mo” Wilson was spending time with Kaitlin’s boyfriend, Colin Strickland. The two apparently went swimming together, and shortly afterward Kaitlin found out — then allegedly shot Mo to death in a “jealous rage”.
The 34-year-old was brought in for questioning but not arrested. She took the opportunity to escape the state and later the country — going on the lam for about six weeks. Finally she was captured in Costa Rica on June 29 after 43 days on the run.
Seriously, how did she manage to evade authorities so long?? Since her capture, we’ve been learning a lot about her time on the lam.
First off, she got plastic surgery. When she was found, she had a bandage on her nose and bruising under her eyes. She claimed it was from a surfing accident, but once she got processed investigators couldn’t help but notice a change in her appearance compared to her wanted photo — indicating she got a nosejob to help avoid being recognized.
It was also confirmed Kaitlin was traveling under an alias, which was the first name she gave cops. That name may or may not have been the same as the one she gave… the man she was dating.
Yes, according to a shocking report in the Austin American Statesman, the alleged killer went on multiple dates with a man while on the run!
Teal Akerson told the outlet he knew Kaitlin by the name Ari. They met outside the Good Life Tattoo shop in Costa Rica earlier in June and exchanged numbers. They went out a few times, but Akerson says they didn’t get at all serious — he recalls “Ari” told him she “wasn’t ready” to get too close because she had not yet “healed” from a “traumatizing break up.” One that ended in a jealous murder? Yeah, that’s pretty traumatizing. But considering she was the suspected killer, we have to assume she’s talking about being traumatized by the swim date? Yeesh.
Apparently Armstrong was also on high alert. While she was brazen enough to start a new relationship — seriously, we’re still floored by that! — she wasn’t totally carefree:
“‘We wanted to go out to different place we went to a bunch of different spots but most of the time she wanted to be at a secluded spot not a lot of people.”
Teal says her “insistence” on only spending time in more private, secluded spots finally “made sense” after he learned her real identity. We wonder if he thought she was just trying to keep things romantic at the time? (In any case, y’all single folks out there might want to note that one as a potential red flag!) He told the outlet he was totally clueless the entire time:
“I didn’t put any of it together, you wouldn’t imagine it. After it all happened, and I heard what she was really doing and running from it made sense why she didn’t want to be seen.”
As for when he found out, Akerson says he didn’t even know Ari was Kaitlin after the arrest. She looked so different that he didn’t recognize her from the photos put out by US Marshals. We guess that facelift and hair change went a long way!
Other Costa Rican locals who met “Ari” say she seemed totally normal, making a life for herself teaching yoga and working part-time at the hostel where she was staying, reportedly a $20/night joint called Don Jon’s Surf and Yoga Lodge.
Last we heard she was in slightly less comfortable digs, having been transported to a jail cell in Austin to face charges of first-degree murder. A $3.5 MILLION bond has been reported, presumably because this woman is the clearest flight risk of all time.
As for Teal, well, it’s probably a good thing they didn’t get too close. And that he didn’t go for any swims with any other ladies…
[Image via Travis County Jail/Teal Akerson/Instagram.]
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