NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!
Fugitive Texas murder suspect Kaitlin Armstrong has been captured in Costa Rica, more than six weeks after Austin police obtained a murder warrant in the death of pro cyclist Anna Moriah “Mo” Wilson.
US Marshals announced the bust Thursday morning, 43 days into the manhunt, and said she had been captured Wednesday.
Costa Rican authorities assisted US law enforcement in tracking Armstrong to a hostel on Santa Teresa Beach in Provincia de Puntarenas, the Marshals announced. Authorities said she used a “fraudulent passport” to fly from Newark, New Jersey, to San Jose, Costa Rica, on May 18.
“The Marshals Service elevated the Kaitlin Armstrong investigation to major case status early in this investigation, which likely played a key role in her capture after a 43-day run,” said US Marshal for the Western District of Texas Susan Pamerleau. “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.”
TEXAS MURDER SUSPECT KAITLIN ARMSTRONG THROUGH THE YEARS: LOVE TRIANGLE FUGITIVE SEEN IN DECADES-OLD PHOTOS
Armstrong is expected to be deported to face justice in the US, where she has been charged with murder and unlawfully fleeing prosecution.
Austin police found Wilson, 25, riddled with gunshot wounds at a friend’s home around 10 pm on May 11. The California resident is one of the country’s top pro cyclists and was visiting Texas ahead of a competition when she went out for an evening with Colin Strickland, another pro cyclist whom police describe as Armstrong’s boyfriend.
Moments after Strickland dropped Wilson off that evening, according to investigators, Armstrong’s SUV showed up on surveillance video outside.
The 34-year-old yoga teacher was questioned and released on May 12. By May 17, she was named in a murder warrant. By then, she’d already flown from Texas to New York, where police say she arrived at LaGuardia Airport on May 14.
Costa Rica law enforcement work closely with their U.S. counterparts in such cases, according to Lenny DePaul, the retired former commander of the U.S. Marshals Service’s New York / New Jersey Regional Fugitive Task Force.
“They will deport her, and she’ll probably waive extradition – and then the US Marshals Service will have 10 days to go down and extradite her back to the United States,” he told Fox News Digital Thursday.
Federal investigators and their Costa Rican partners were able to track her movements after the trail went cold in Newark, he added.
KAITLIN ARMSTRONG MANHUNT: NEW YORK CAMPSITE LINKED TO SUSPECT IN AUSTIN CYCLIST LOVE TRIANGLE SLAYING
“I do know that there were a couple of US Marshals on the ground that were working with the Costa Rican authorities, as well as Homeland Security [Investigations], [and State Department] Diplomatic Security Services as well, “he said.” It took them a couple of weeks to really tighten up that noose a little bit and get her in their sights. “
As for the sister whom Armstrong may have visited before fleeing the country, DePaul said he hopes for her sake she cooperated with authorities.
“If not, she’s facing significant time,” he said. “They could certainly charge her with harboring a fugitive or aiding and abetting. It’s a significant amount of time in a federal penitentiary, so I’m hoping she jumped onboard Team USA …[and] did the right thing. “
KAITLIN ARMSTRONG: SUSPECT ACCUSED IN TEXAS LOVE TRIANGLE MURDER SOLD CAR FOR $ 12,200 BEFORE FLEEING, FEDS SAY
Also on May 14, an anonymous caller told Austin police that Armstrong had recently obtained a handgun. Months earlier, according to the tipster, she allegedly grew furious after learning that Strickland was involved in a romantic relationship with Wilson. Police said one of two 9 mm handguns they recovered at Strickland’s home was “significant to the investigation.” Armstrong also lived there, according to the warrant for her arrest.
Armstrong may have visited her sister at a campground about 120 miles away from New York airport, according to a man there who told Fox News Digital that he saw her “before the whole thing blew up.”
Then, her last known whereabouts were at Newark International Airport in New Jersey, also about 120 miles away from the camp, on May 18. Marshals said they did not find a record of any departing flights in her name.
KAITLIN ARMSTRONG’S NEW FEDERAL WARRANT CONFIRMS ‘MO’ WILSON MURDER WEAPON FOUND IN FUGITIVE’S TEXAS HOME
Armstrong is a former real estate investor and may have a significant amount of cash, according to authorities.
Jason Jensen, a Utah-based private investigator who has been following the case, told Fox News Digital that there is a chance Kaitlin Armstrong is using her sister’s identity while on the lam. A day before Kaitlin Armstrong was seen in New Jersey, her sister allegedly obtained a New York state driver’s license, he said.
FUGITIVE KAITLIN ARMSTRONG: TIMELINE OF AUSTIN MURDER SUSPECT’S DISAPPEARANCE
Police in Austin previously said they’d already recovered the handgun used to kill Wilson after searching Strickland’s home, where Armstrong also lived.
According to the warrant for Armstrong, he had bought her the pistol earlier this year.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
This is a breaking news story.