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Mollie Tibbetts Trial: DNA Analyst Confirms Blood in Suspect's Trunk Proven to Be Tibbetts'

Dayna Remus
May 25, 2021
08:50 A.M.
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Mollie Tibbetts was only 20 years old when she was brutally murdered via multiple stab wounds. The suspect, Cristhian Bahena Rivera, is standing on trial for murder in the first degree.

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Abducted and murdered in 2018, 20-year-old Mollie Tibbets' blood was found in Mexican Immigrant Cristhian Bahena Rivera's Chevy Malibu truck. This is according to DNA analyst Tara Scott.

Tibbetts, who was studying psychology at the University of Iowa, went missing in Brooklyn, Iowa, on July 18, 2018. Her body was eventually found in a cornfield four weeks later.

Oakland police and animal control respond to the scene of a shooting that happened on Tuesday, December 3, 2019. | Photo: Getty Images

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DNA ANALYST TESTIFIES

Testifying DNA analyst Scott, who works at Iowa's crime lab as a criminalist, said that she examined a swab sourced from a bloodstain swab taken from the trunk of the suspect's vehicle. She stated:

"The profile I had from Mollie Tibbetts and the profile from that blood matched. They were exactly the same."

The car was searched by investigating officers on August 20, 2018. This was following the suspect Rivera's permission for them to do so.

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THE CHARGES AND THE DEFENSE

Investigators claimed that farmworker Rivera confessed to the crime and said he led them to Tibbetts' body. The suspect has been charged with first-degree murder.

[Tibbetts' boyfriend] also referred to her as the love of his life.

The defense has affirmed that the accused was coerced into a false confession. They alleged that Rivera was subject to jarring interrogation techniques and sleep deprivation.

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THE AUTOPSY

An autopsy was performed on the victim, who was last spotted jogging in Brooklyn on July 18, 2020, somewhere around 19:30. The results suggested that she died from multiple stab wounds.

This was according to the State Medical Examiner who also revealed that out of the stab wounds found on multiple areas of Tibbetts' body, one located in her right hand indicated she might have been defending herself.

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THE BOYFRIEND TAKES THE STAND

Tibbetts' boyfriend, Dalton Jack, was one of the first two witnesses for the prosecution, alleging that he last communicated with his girlfriend via Snapchat on July 18, 2020. He expressed his affection for her, stating:

"She was always happy, bubbly, goofy. Always liked to have fun."

He also referred to her as the love of his life. He was purportedly away on a work trip when the incident occurred, returning home soon as he learned that she was nowhere to be found.

Another egregious stabbing resulted in the death of a five-year-old earlier this year. The little girl's mother was charged with the crime.

Caroline Rose Cagle had just celebrated her 5th birthday a few weeks before she was slain. The mother, Penny, has no official criminal history.

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