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Suspect in Tibbetts murder wants trial moved for diversity

Cristhian Bahena Rivera appears in a Poweshiek County Courtroom in August 2018. (POOL PHOTO)
Cristhian Bahena Rivera appears in a Poweshiek County Courtroom in August 2018. (POOL PHOTO)(KCRG)
Published: Mar. 3, 2019 at 6:30 PM CST
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The former farmhand charged with first-degree murder in the abduction and stabbing death of 20-year-old Mollie Tibbetts in Iowa wants to have his trial moved to a more diverse county.

The Des Moines Register reports that 24-year-old Cristhian Bahena Rivera's lawyers filed a motion Friday asking that the trial be moved out of Poweshiek County, so there can be more minority representation in the jury pool.

Rivera is charged in the killing of Tibbetts, a University of Iowa student who disappeared while out for a run July 18 in Brooklyn, Iowa. Investigators recovered her body a month later in a cornfield. A medical examiner has said Tibbetts was stabbed to death.

Rivera is a Mexican national who has been accused of being in the country illegally. He worked at a dairy farm a few miles from where Tibbetts disappeared.