Iowa investigators confirmed moments ago that a first-degree murder charge has been filed against 24-yr-old Christian (or "Cristhian") Bahena Rivera, an undocumented immigrant who has been in the Brooklyn, Iowa area for four to seven years.
While officials have not confirmed the identity of the body found in rural Poweshiek County this morning, they say they believe it to be Mollie Tibbetts, the 20-yr-old Iowa student who was last seen July 18th.
Investigators identified Rivera's vehicle via security camera footage from an area homeowner, on the same night and in the same area where Tibbetts was last seen running. Rivera seems to have confessed to the crime, telling police he "blacked out" after chasing her down after she told him to leave her alone and quit following her. Rivera led police to her body, investigators have confirmed.
While her body was found in an area that had been extensively searched over the past month, she was covered with corn stalks, law enforcement said.
"We're trying to get as much background on Mr. Rivera as possible," the lead investigator said. First-degree murder carries a penalty in Iowa of life without possibility of parole.