(RoyalPatriot.com )- The Tennessee kindergarten teacher and avid marathon runner who had been kidnapped and murdered early last month died from a single gunshot wound to the back of the head, according to the recently released autopsy report.
Eliza Fletcher, the 34-year-old mother of two, suffered two blunt-force trauma injuries to her right leg and was shot in the back of the head from an “indeterminate” range, according to the autopsy report from West Tennessee Regional Forensic Center in Memphis.
Fletcher, a marathon runner, had been on her regular morning run near the University of Memphis in the early pre-dawn hours on September 2 when she was attacked by a man and forced into a vehicle.
The day after her disappearance, police arrested Cleotha Abston. A 38-year-old career criminal, Abson previously served 19 years for kidnapping and was convicted of raping a man as a juvenile. He was later charged with kidnapping and murder.
Following a massive search, Fletcher was found on September 5 behind an abandoned duplex building in south Memphis after police were led to the duplex’s driveway and smelled the odor of decay.
While her murder was described by investigators as an “isolated attack by a stranger,” it did shine a spotlight on the risks female joggers face while out running by themselves.
After Fletcher’s murder made national news, a woman came forward, suing the city of Memphis and the Memphis police department claiming they botched a 2021 rape investigation in which Cleotha Abston was the prime suspect.
However, Abston was not arrested on the charges because the evidence from the rape kit had not been available at the time.