Texas police are looking for a 34-year-old yoga teacher accused of shooting dead the leading American gravel cyclist, called the ‘most winning woman in America’, because she had had a brief relationship with her boyfriend.
Kaitlin Armstrong has not been seen since May 13 – two days after the murder of Moriah Wilson, 25, who was found covered in blood at a friend’s home in East Austin on May 11.
An arrest warrant has been issued for Armstrong, a yoga teacher who is still on the run and has deleted all of her social media accounts.
Armstrong’s girlfriend Colin Strickland, also a professional cyclist, had a brief romantic relationship with Wilson in October when he and his girlfriend of three years were on hiatus.
He and Armstrong reunited shortly after his sling with Wilson, but his girlfriend only found out about the one-week dalliance in January.
Moriah Wilson, the leading gravel cyclist in the United States, was found shot and killed on May 11 in an apartment in Austin before a competition
The Austin American Statesman reported that Armstrong ‘became furious and shaken with anger’, according to a police spokesman.
Armstrong reportedly told a tipper that she wanted to kill Wilson and that she had either recently purchased a firearm or would, according to the statement, obtained from Fox 7 Austin.
Strickland told police he bought two 9mm handguns for him and Armstrong around this time.
Wilson had flown from California to Texas, where she was staying with a friend prior to a race in Hico, northwest of Waco.
She was found dead shot several times with a 9mm pistol in a home in East Austin the day before the race, according to the statement.
The APD tested Armstrong’s pistol and found that the weapon was the same firearm used in Wilson’s death based on ballistic evidence.
On the evening of May 11 – the day after Wilson arrived in the city, after his victory in the 222 km Belgian waffle ride in California – Wilson and Strickland took a swim in Deep Eddy, a famous municipal swimming pool in Austin.
Strickland, which is sponsored by Red Bull, and Wilson went to dinner at Pool Burger after their swim.
He led her back to the Austin apartment at 8:30 p.m.
Armstrong’s SUV was soon after driven past, with the footage recorded on a neighbor’s Ring camera.
Armstrong did not return to the house she shared with Strickland until 9:20 p.m., he told police.
Strickland issued a statement Friday, insisting his relationship with Wilson was ‘platonic and professional’.
Yoga teacher Kaitlin Armstrong has not been seen since May 13 after allegedly murdering Wilson in an apartment in Austin, Texas
He wrote: “There is no way to express the regret and torture I feel over my closeness to this horrific crime.”
He said he cooperated fully with the police.
“I admired her very much and regarded her as a close friend,” he wrote.
‘I deeply mourn her loss.’
Wilson was seen as a rising star in the sport.
She had just become a professional and had left her job at the California cycling company Specialized and had weeks before taken the first lead for elite women in the Life Time Grand Prix offroad series.
She had a busy season with races ahead of her, with competitions across the US and in East Africa.
Wilson grew up in East Burke, Vermont.
Her father, Eric Wilson, was on the American ski team, while her aunt, Laura, participated in the Olympics as a cross-country skier.
Armstrong’s girlfriend Colin Strickland (pictured), also a professional cyclist, had a brief romantic relationship with Wilson in October when he and his girlfriend were on break for three years.
Armstrong was charged Friday with the murder of Wilson and is now on the run
She skied competitively throughout her youth and continued to compete at Dartmouth College, where she also played football.
She is trained as an engineer.
“Moriah Wilson was absolutely light and laughable,” said Rebecca Rusch, mountain bike and gravel hall-of-famer.
‘She was talented, intelligent, gentle, fast, focused and graceful.
‘She had a balance and inner strength that is so rare in any human being, especially one as young as 25.
‘There was a bubble of positivity and joy around her and we all wanted to be in her bubble.’
Wilson was described by his fellow cyclists as being ‘all light and laughter’
Lauren De Crescenzo, winner of Unbound Gravel, said Wilson was a tough competitor and ‘always kind, humble and nice to be around’.
She said: ‘I wish I had gotten to know you better on the bike. We only spoke a few times, but you were always kind, humble and nice to be with.
‘I knew you as a tough competitor on the bike who always pushed our sport to new heights. Thank you for pushing us all to get better. I’ve had the deepest admiration for you this season. ‘
Ted King, a former professional road racer and gravel challenger, also from Vermont, said: ‘It’s impossible to absorb the news of the last few days. Immeasurable heartache with a glimmer of happiness after having had the privilege of getting to know Mo. ‘
Wilson and Strickland on May 11 took a swim at this community pool, Deep Eddy
He added: “She has already stamped her name on the sport, but I feel like I have spent the last two months bragging about meeting her, telling people about how high her career will go and that she is from Vermont. . “
Her parents, Eric and Karen, thanked the cycling community for their support.
“While the tragic loss of Moriah is unfathomable, at the same time we want everyone to join us in celebrating her life, achievements and love for others,” they said in a statement.
‘We always pressed tirelessly to achieve her goals and we knew she was pursuing what she loved. We will miss her terribly and know that everyone is grieving over her with us.
‘We know Moriah wanted the event to continue for her countrymen to test their limits as she would have been with her friends on the racetrack.
‘We hope everyone feels her passion and support as they pursue their own dreams. Her spirit will be there with you all while she trains and on every race day. ‘