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Jury finds Cristhian Bahena Rivera guilty in 2018 stabbing death of Iowa runner

Student Killed-Iowa
Posted at 3:13 PM, May 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-28 16:14:41-04

IOWA CITY, Iowa — A jury found Cristhian Bahena Rivera guilty of murder on Friday in the abduction and killing of University of Iowa student Mollie Tibbetts, who vanished while out for a run in 2018.

According to the Associated Press, the jury unanimously found Rivera guilty of first-degree murder in the stabbing death of Tibbetts, who was majoring in becoming a child psychologist.

The jury, who deliberated for seven hours on Thursday and Friday, included nine white members and three of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish descent, the AP reported.

Rivera will now be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The high-profile case lasted two weeks at the Scott County Courthouse in Davenport.

Prosecutors said Rivera followed Tibbetts while she was out running on July 18, 2018, killed her after she threatened to call the police, and then hid the body in a cornfield, the Des Moines Register reported.

Rivera led investigators to her body after he made a partial confession on August 20, 2018. Investigators also found Tibbett's DNA in his trunk.

During his interview with police, he said he "blacked out" and didn't remember how he killed Tibbetts.