AUSTIN, Texas — Kaitlin Armstrong, the woman accused of killing professional cyclist Anna Moriah Wilson in East Austin in May, pleaded not guilty to the murder charge she faces during her first court appearance on Wednesday.
After six weeks on the run, Armstrong was brought to the Travis County Jail earlier this month. She is being held on a $3.5 million bond for the first-degree murder charge she is facing in connection with Wilson's death. She is also charged with "unrelated theft of service" for allegedly failing to pay for a Botox procedure several years ago.
On Wednesday, Armstrong appeared before a judge for the first time to address the murder charge. She is accused of shooting "Mo" Wilson at a home in East Austin on May 11, after discovering Wilson and Armstrong's then-boyfriend had spent the day together.
Now that she pleaded not guilty to the murder, the case will go to trial. A docket call is set for Oct. 19, and Jury selection is expected to begin on Oct. 24.
"This is a beginning of a process that will play out in court and it should play out in court, and we understand that there are questions that need to be answered and we look forward to doing so. Ms. Armstrong wants her date in court, she wants a trial," said defense attorney Rick Cofer.
Armstrong's Jeep was seen on surveillance footage leaving the area of the home Wilson was staying at while she visited Austin for a cycling race. Armstrong later sold that vehicle, then flew from Austin to New York, then from New Jersey to Costa Rica. She was arrested in Provincia de Puntarena, Costa Rica, on June 29 after 43 days on the run.
By the time she was captured, Armstrong had altered her appearance by cutting and dyeing her hair. She also reportedly had cosmetic work done to her nose.
Law enforcement officials say it was Armstrong's love of yoga that led them to where she was staying in Costa Rica. She had taken several yoga classes before her arrest and went by three different aliases, though most of her acquaintances say they only knew her by the name "Ari Martin."
Court records show that Armstrong has hired two Austin-area lawyers to represent her. It's possible that, on Wednesday, we could learn more about her flight out of the country to avoid prosecution, as well as possible fraud connected to her use of someone else's passport to fly out of the U.S. and to enter a different country.
Cameras are not allowed in the courtroom Wednesday,
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