Eliza Fletcher murder suspect slapped with 'unrelated' kidnapping and rape charges

The suspect being charged with the kidnapping and murder of the Memphis mother of two is now facing new charges that are unrelated to the abduction of Eliza Fletcher.

Cleotha Henderson, 38, who is charged with first degree murder and especially aggravated kidnaping of Fletcher, is now being charged with an additional count of aggravated kidnapping and rape.

A Memphis Police Department Public Information Officer told Fox News Digital that the new aggravated kidnapping and aggravated rape charges are "unrelated" to the crimes that Henderson allegedly committed against Fletcher, but said he didn't have any additional information to share.

Henderson is also being charged with unlawful carrying or possession of a weapon. A grand jury indicted him of the additional charges on Thursday, according to court records.



Left: Eliza Fletcher in a photo released by Memphis Police. Right: Cleotha Abston appears in court for his arraignment Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022. (Memphis Police Department, Adam Sabes/Fox News Digital) (Memphis Police Department, Adam Sabes/Fox News Di

Fletcher was allegedly abducted by Henderson, who was driving a GMC Terrain, at 4:20 a.m. on the morning of Sept. 2. Police say that she was "abducted and forced into" the dark-colored GMC Terrain.

Police say that a surveillance camera captured the same GMC Terrain in the area of the abduction 24 minutes before Fletcher was taken.

Henderson was taken into custody by law enforcement officials on Saturday morning, but declined to tell police officers where Fletcher was, resulting in a massive search operation for the missing mother of two.


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Murder suspect Cleotha Abston appears in court at Shelby County Criminal Justice Center in Memphis Tennessee, Wednesday, September 7, 2022.  (Credit: Matt Symons for Fox News Digital)

According to an affidavit, two people, including Abston's brother, Mario, told police officers that they had seen Henderson cleaning the interior of the GMC Terrain with floor cleaner and washing clothes in the sink.

Police also say that Fletcher "suffered serious injury" and "left evidence, e.g., blood, in the vehicle that the Defendant cleaned."

Memphis police officials announced on Tuesday that the body of Fletcher was found at around 5:07 p.m. Monday in the "rear of a vacant duplex apartment," around the area where Henderson was allegedly seen cleaning out the GMC Terrain.


The side of crawl space of house where the body of Eliza Fletcher was found (Michael Ruiz for Fox News Digital)

Officials didn't release a place or method of Fletcher's death, saying it's too early in the investigation, and also didn't release a motive.

Henderson is being held without bond in a Memphis jail, and is due in court on Sept. 19. He now faces two counts of especially aggravated kidnaping, one count of aggravated rape, two counts of theft, first degree murder, unlawful carrying or possession of a weapon, identity theft, tampering with evidence, and fraudulent use of a credit/debit card.

Fox News' Michael Ruiz, Stephanie Pagones, and Audrey Conklin contributed to this report.

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