Eliza Fletcher kidnapping latest: Body found in Memphis is confirmed to be missing heiress jogger

Man charged over kidnapping of Memphis jogger Eliza Fletcher

Memphis police have confirmed a body found on Monday night is missing Tennessee woman Eliza Fletcher.

“The deceased victim that was located yesterday in the 1600 block of Victor has been identified as 34-year-old Eliza Fletcher,” Memphis police said in a tweet.

“Additional charges for 38-year-old Cleotha Abston have been added for First Degree Murder and First Degree Murder in Perpetration of Kidnapping.”

Ms Fletcher was abducted while jogging on Friday near the University of Memphis campus, sparking a city-wide hunt for the mother of two and her attacker.

On Saturday, US Marshals arrested Mr Abston, after DNA evidence on a pair of sandals pointed to th him as the man seen “aggressively” forcing Ms Fletcher into a vehicle in CCTV footage, a police affidavit said.

Mr Abston, who is due to appear in court on Tuesday for arraignment, had already been charged with especially aggravated kidnapping and tampering with evidence and is being held on a $500,000 bond. It was unclear if he had a lawyer or had entered a plea and could face higher charges.

Ms Fletcher’s family had offered $50,000 for her return. She is the granddaughter of the billionaire founder of Memphis hardware business Orgill.

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Prosecutors are asking the judge to consider additional murder charges when setting bond

Prosecutors are asking a judge to increase Cleotha Abston’s bond as he is facing additional charges in connection with the abduction and murder of Eliza Fletcher.

He was charged with first degree murder a few minutes before his scheduled arraignment appearance on kidnapping charges. Bond was set at $500,000 for the kidnapping charges.

The judge has said he will only consider written submissions and won’t be increasing Mr Abston’s bond.

“This is all hearsay. I am hearing it from somebody else,” the judge said.

The court hearing has just concluded.

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Cleotha Abston enters the Shelby County courtroom

Cleotha Abston has entered a Shelby County courtroom for his arraignment. The judge is explaining his rights.

He is appearing on charges of kidnapping of Eliza Fletcher, and separate identify theft and fraud charges relating to an earlier alleged crime.

It appears that he is not being arraigned on charges of first degree murder, that were filed a few minutes ago by Memphis police.

The judge said he would appoint a lawyer to represent Mr Abston.

Cleotha Abston appears for arraignment in the kidnapping of Eliza Fletcher

(WREG / YouTube)

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Cleotha Abston arraignment hearing begins as police press murder charges

An arraignment hearing has begun in Memphis for Cleotha Abston, who was this morning charged with the first degree murder of Eliza Fletcher.

Brad Broders, a reporter with ABC24, said Prosecutor Paul Hagerman and Shelby County District Attorney Steve Mulroy are in the courtroom, along with a dozen members of the media.

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Cleotha Abston charged with murder after body of missing heiress Eliza Fletcher is found

Memphis police have charged Cleotha Abston with first degree murder and first degree murder in perpetration of a kidnapping over the death of Eliza Fletcher.

Rachel Sharp has the details.

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Memphis police confirm body is Eliza Fletcher

Police in Memphis have confirmed they have found the body of missing jogger Eliza Fletcher.

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Everything we know about the kidnapping of Memphis teacher as body found

Four days after Eliza Fletcher was snatched and bundled into a car in Memphis, police say they have located a body.

Rachel Sharp reports on what we know about the case so far.

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Cause of death remains unknown

A cause of death has not been determined in the case of Eliz Fletcher, according to a report on Tuesday.

Citing multiple sources who confirmed the identification of her body, local news outlet Fox13 added that her cause of death remains unknown.

Police or the medical examiner for Shelby County are yet to confirm the identification publicly.

The Independent has contacted the Memphis Police Department for confirmation while the Shelby County medical examiner’s office could not be reached on Tuesday morning.

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Breaking: Police identify body as Eliza Fletcher

The body discovered by Memphis police on Monday has reportedly been identified as that of missing teacher Eliza Fletcher, according to a local news report.

Citing multiple sources, Fox13 News Memphis said offcials had confirmed that the body found on Monday in south Memphis belonged to Ms Fletcher, who was abducted by a 38-year-old suspect on Friday morning while jogging.

More information is expected from authorities on Tuesday and police have not confirmed the identification publicly.

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Suspect stalked missing heiress for 24 minutes before abduction, police say

The suspect charged with abducting missing heiress Eliza Fletcher was seen stalking her in his SUV 24 minutes before she was abducted, police say.

Cleotha “Pookie” Abston has been charged with kidnapping Ms Fletcher, 34, while she was jogging near the intersection of Central Avenue and Zach H. Curlin Street in Memphis at around 4.20am on Friday.

According to a police affidavit, Abston’s GMS Terrain was seen on surveillance footage in the area 24 minutes before the kidnapping.

Footage then shows a man exit the dark-coloured SUV and aggressively force Ms Fletcher into the passenger side of the vehicle.

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Everything we know about the kidnapping of Memphis teacher Eliza Fletcher

The desperate search to find missing Memphis teacher and business heiress Eliza Fletcher has now entered its fourth day – as a 38-year-old man charged with her kidnapping is reportedly refusing to reveal her whereabouts to authorities.

Eliza Fletcher, a 34-year-old mother-of-two, was snatched while on an early morning jog near the University of Memphis campus on Friday.

On Saturday, 38-year-old Cleotha Abston was arrested on suspicion of her abduction.

He was charged with especially aggravated kidnapping and tampering with evidence on Sunday and is being held on $500,000 bond.

No motive has been given and there are no clues as to Ms Fletcher’s whereabouts.

Rachel Sharp has the full story:

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