A jury discovered Texas yoga teacher Kaitlin Armstrong accountable of homicide within the deadly capturing of romantic rival Anna Moriah “Mo” Wilson.
The jury deliberated for less than 3 hours on Thursday prior to attaining the accountable verdict.
The Wilson friends and family embraced each and every different as they cried in a huddle following the decision, whilst Armstrong’s circle of relatives looked to be in a state of outrage. The defendant’s mom sat stoically whilst her father and sister each left the court docket, the latter visibly weeping.
Wilson, 25, was once discovered affected by a couple of gunshot wounds at a pal’s house in Austin at the night time of Would possibly 11, 2022. The biking prodigy was once as soon as romantically connected to Armstrong’s then-boyfriend, Colin Strickland, a fellow skilled bicycle owner, and was once discovered shot hours after assembly up with him, police mentioned.
Armstrong, 35, was once arrested in June 2022 at a hostel in Costa Rica following a 43-day seek and has been detained since then on a $3.5 million bond. She had pleaded no longer accountable to first-degree homicide in Wilson’s dying.
The sentencing segment is these days underway within the Austin court docket, with the court docket listening to statements from witnesses, together with Wilson’s mom, father and brother.
Wilson’s mom, Karen Wilson, mentioned her daughter was once destined to “reside and transfer and shine and concentrate and snigger and be the sort of distinctive particular person.”
Requested by means of prosecutors in regards to the second she discovered about her daughter’s dying, she answered between sobs, “It was once the worst second of my lifestyles. My complete lifestyles hasn’t ever been the similar since. The whole lot is the other way up. I can by no means be the similar.”
Her father, Eric Wilson, likened it to dwelling via a nasty nightmare — “however this isn’t a nightmare, it is fact.”
“I take into accounts it each night time. If I do sleep, after I get up, it is the first concept on my thoughts. I reside with it on a daily basis,” he mentioned.
Her brother, Matthew Wilson, mentioned his sister was once his “closest confidant.”
“My sister had her lifestyles taken from her for no explanation why in any respect,” he mentioned. “She’ll by no means trip a motorbike back, she’ll by no means take a 20-minute damage from paintings to bake banana bread in her kitchen, she’ll by no means get married, she’ll by no means purchase a house, she’ll by no means have children, she’ll by no means meet anyone that she loves and … my oldsters won’t ever be capable to see that occur, to look her revel in her lifestyles.”
Caitlin Money, who discovered Wilson bleeding at the flooring of her house, described to the court docket the guilt, PTSD, panic assaults and paranoia she has skilled since.
The protection may even provide witnesses together with Armstrong’s father and sister previous to the sentencing.
After calling just about 40 witnesses over the two-week trial, Travis County prosecutor Rick Jones informed the jurors all over remaining statements on Thursday that there was once “overwhelming” proof that issues to Armstrong pulling the cause.
Prosecutors introduced proof that they are saying confirmed Armstrong’s 2012 Jeep Cherokee circling the place of abode’s block the night time of the murder, that her firearm was once used within the murder and her DNA was once most likely discovered on Wilson’s bicycle.
“Most effective Kaitlin Armstrong, the defendant, suits those details that [were] introduced to you via that witness chair,” Jones mentioned.
Prosecutors additionally replayed audio on Thursday of the moments Wilson was once fatally shot — two times within the head and as soon as within the center “for just right measure,” Jones mentioned. Additionally they confirmed the jurors photos they mentioned confirmed Armstrong making an attempt to escape from deputies within the weeks main as much as the trial whilst being transported to an off-site clinical appointment.
“She’s no longer simply operating from the sheriff’s division,” Jones informed jurors. “She’s operating from you and also you and also you and also you and also you and also you and also you.”
Jones implored the jurors to not cross down the protection’s “rabbit holes.”
Of their remaining statements, the protection mentioned Armstrong was once “trapped in a nightmare of circumstantial proof.”
“There’s numerous sizzle, however there is no longer a lot steak,” protection legal professional Rick Cofer mentioned. “It is a case in accordance with assumptions; it is in accordance with affirmation bias and a loss of direct proof.”
Cofer mentioned police narrowed in on Armstrong to suit a very simple narrative of a “spurned, jealous lover” and did not examine different attainable suspects within the case.
“She needed to be portrayed as a jealous psycho to create the cause,” Cofer mentioned whilst refuting the prosecutors’ characterization of her as being a jealous female friend.
Protection legal professional Geoffrey Puryear additionally refuted the state’s DNA and ballistics proof and informed jurors Armstrong was once unfastened to go away when she flew to Costa Rica days after being interviewed by means of police about Wilson’s dying.
In wrapping up their remaining, prosecutors requested why Armstrong used a false identify and passport to fly to Costa Rica and sought cosmetic surgery as soon as there.
“Those are all indications of guilt, girls and gents,” state legal professional Guillermo Gonzalez informed the jurors. “This is not anyone on a frolic. That is anyone who is a fugitive and desperately seeking to escape.”
Armstrong declined to testify all over the trial.
Strickland took to the stand and testified about his and Armstrong’s on-again, off-again “tumultuous” dating.
ABC Information’ Olivia Osteen, Meghan Mariani, Keturah Grey and Gina Sunseri contributed to this record.