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Trial for Accused Murderer of Mollie Tibbetts Pushed Back Because of COVID-19


Cristhian Bahena Rivera

The trial in the murder of Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts, 20, has been pushed back because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was going to start January 25, 2021, but was rescheduled to May 17, 2021, according to KCCI. This follows an order from the Iowa Supreme Court to postpone trials because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prosecutors say that Tibbetts, a psychology student at the University of Iowa, went missing on July 18, 2018. She was later found dead. Investigators claim that Cristhian Bahena Rivera, 26, confessed to killing her: He approached her when she was jogging, and got furious when she said she would call police. Rivera allegedly claimed he blocked out the memory of actually killing her, but found her in the trunk of his vehicle.

The defense has maintained that the confession was involuntary.

“I can see in your eyes,” said one person allegedly said during the interrogation. “That there’s something you’re hiding from us.”

Portions of his statements to investigators were thrown out after a hearing in February: jurors are expected to see details from before he received an immigration detainer and after he was properly read his Miranda rights.

[Screengrab via Law&Crime Network]

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