After a frantic search for the missing billionaire heiress, a body has been found in a wooded area close to the scene of the abduction.
Cops have not yet confirmed whether the body is that of the missing kindergarten teacher, Eliza Fletcher, whose shocking abduction was captured on security cameras.
Fletcher, 34, was violently abducted last week by Cleotha Abston, 38, who bundled the unsuspecting mom into his black SUV as she enjoyed her morning jog near the University of Memphis on Friday.
The body was found around seven miles from the street where Fletcher had been dragged into the vehicle by Abston. The security camera footage showing her desperately struggling to get away from Abston was the last time she was seen.
The site of the body is just a hundred yards away from the Longview Gardens apartment complex where Abston’s brother, Mario lives who was also arrested on unrelated drug charges.
NEW: More than a dozen squad cars leaving location we’ve at in wooded area of possible search. This is not far from where police say Eliza Fletcher’s kidnapping suspect Cleotha Abston cleaned his SUV after abduction. Police have not confirmed why they’re here. @3onyourside pic.twitter.com/yLYexFSRVM
— Shay Arthur (@ShayA_WREG3) September 5, 2022
Before the body was found, a police helicopter could be seen circling the area and a heavy-duty Memphis Police command center arrived on the scene.
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Neighbors who had gathered outside to watch the horrific events unfold spoke to the MailOnline:
“It’s emotional. It really hurts,” said April Jackson.
“That could have been anybody out jogging that morning, a student, anyone. And he was just released two years ago for another abduction and he gets out and does it again,” she continued.
“It makes me sick.”
Abston was arrested after eagle-eyed cops spotted a black SUV with a damaged taillight matching the vehicle in the security camera footage parked outside his home.
His neighbor said she had seen him behaving in an “odd” way that Friday and she saw him frantically scrubbing the interior of his 2013 GMC Terrain with a carpet cleaner.
Police also matched Abston’s DNA with a pair of sandals found at the scene of the abduction which the suspect lost in the struggle with Fletcher as he tried to force the frantic woman into the car.
The kidnapping and presumed murder of Eliza Fletcher is a tragedy for her and her entire family. My heart hurts for her two children especially. Whatever happened, I’m sure her thoughts were of them in the end. Just devastating. 🥲 pic.twitter.com/9X78uR2rMi
— Maggie Speaks (@MaggiesMusings) September 6, 2022
According to reports, Abston had stalked the area for around half an hour before abducting Fletcher. Police report that they have footage of the same vehicle cruising the area 24 minutes before the kidnapping took place.
It is not yet known whether he had specifically targeted her or if the heiress to Orgill hardware company had simply been in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Abston, who is set to appear in court later today had been in prison for another violent abduction for 20 years until his release in 2020.
In May 2001, the violent thug approached Memphis attorney, Kemper Durand from behind before stealing his wallet and forcing him into the trunk of his car.
Abston then drove around for several hours before stopping at an ATM and demanding Durand take out cash. It was then that the desperate lawyer screamed for help and Abston fled.
It was also reported earlier this morning that the violent felon has numerous other convictions under his belt including aggravated assault, aggravated assault with a weapon, and rape which were all committed while he was a juvenile.
His bail is set at $500,000 and he is still refusing to cooperate with the police.