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Mother of Georgia teen killed by carnival worker found ‘creepy’ texts between the two

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The mother of the Georgia teen who was killed in March by a traveling circus worker claims she saw, “creepy” messages between the two over the marriage and warned her daughter to stay away.

Cynthia Butterworth claims that she met accused killer James Michael Wright, 23, last year at the North Georgia State Fair in Cobb County when he offered her daughter, 17-year-old Joslyn Alsup, free horse rides, she told WXIA in an interview.

Butterworth said after that meeting, she discovered “creepy” messages on social media between the two in which Wright told the teen, “I will marry you.”

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“I’m like, ‘that’s just creepy.’ I told her not to have anything to do with him anymore, and as far as I know, she didn’t.”

James Michael Wright, 23, (left) was said to have met Joslyn Alsup, 17, (right) last year at the North Georgia State Fair in Cobb County.
(Johnson City, Tennessee Police Department)

The girl was missing on 8 March after Butterworth said that they had not heard from her daughter in more than two weeks.

“They would run away since October of last year. At least every weekend she would go,” she told the local station.

She said that the so-called “weekend runaway” would often be home late, but always to check.

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Butterworth said she only learned of her daughter’s death on Monday from a press conference of Washington County, Virginia Sheriff’s office.

“I replayed, only God knows how many times, and I just couldn’t believe that they were talking about her.”

Wright was arrested on Thursday, after police say he went on a killing spree, murdering three women, in just 18 days. He is said to have fulfilled all of the victims while he worked as a sub-contracted worker for the James H. Drew Carnival.

Wright is facing three counts of capital murder for the death of Joslyn, 25-year-old Athina Hopson and the 22-year-old Elizabeth Marie Vanmeter. Both women were from Tennessee.

Wright is accused of killing Athina Hopson, 25 (left), Elizabeth Marie Vanmeter, 22 (middle) and Joslyn M. Alsup,17 (right).
(Johnson City, Tennessee Police Department)

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Warrants filed in Washington County, Virginia General district Court stated that Wright allegedly told the police that he had sex with Joslyn and accidentally shot her on 9 March, during the shoot of an animal in the forest, WCYB reported.

He is said to have then covered the body with logs in a wooded area near his home.

Butterworth called for the death penalty, adding that “even torture is too good for him.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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