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Cleotha Abston Charged in Connection with Abduction of Missing Heiress Eliza Fletcher

On Sunday morning police said early that a 38-year-old male had been detained in connection with the abduction of wealthy heiress Eliza Fletcher. Following Fletcher’s disappearance on Friday, Cleotha Abston was accused of exceptionally aggravated kidnapping and tampering with evidence.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation

Fletcher, a teacher in Memphis and the granddaughter of a billionaire, was kidnapped on Friday, according to the police. One man has been booked in connection with the case, but she is still missing. Her family has offered a reward of $50,000 for information leading to her safe return.


According to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, 34-year-old Fletcher, also known as Liza, was last seen jogging near the University of Memphis campus at around 4:30 a.m. on Friday when she was pushed into a dark-colored SUV. At 7:45 a.m., officers were called when she failed to arrive at her house. She was wearing pink and purple running shorts. When police arrived at the area after receiving a call about 7 a.m., they found Fletcher’s broken smartphone and abandoned water bottle.

A second man, Mario Abston was also detained during the inquiry but was not thought to be involved in the kidnapping, according to the police. He was accused of possessing both drugs and firearms.

Joseph Orgill III, a multibillionaire who founded the Memphis-based hardware distributor Orgill Inc., was Fletcher’s grandfather. 2018 saw his passing. According to Forbes, Orgill is the largest independent distributor in the country for hardware and home improvement products. With $3.2 billion in projected sales for 2021, it ranks as the 143rd largest private corporation.

Liza Fletcher’s husband, Richard Fletcher
Instagram/Liza Fletcher

Fletcher is the company’s wealthy heiress. She teaches junior kindergarten at St. Mary’s Episcopal School in Memphis and is a mother of two children. She is married to Richie Fletcher III. She was an experienced runner who also qualified for the Boston Marathon.

Through a Facebook live video, the Second Presbyterian Church, where Fletcher’s family attends, dedicated a hymn to her. Police have also “detained” a suspect and discovered the automobile they were looking for in connection with the kidnapping. The person’s identity has not been made public by the authorities.


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