Accused Mollie Tibbetts killer gets new lawyer team

Cristhian Rivera in court, charged with the murder of Mollie Tibbetts

MONTEZUMA, Iowa - The man accused of killing 20-year-old Mollie Tibbetts has a new lawyer and is waiving his preliminary hearing that was set for this Friday.

Twenty-four-year-old Cristhian Rivera is charged with first degree murder in Tibbetts’ death.  Criminal investigators say he is an undocumented immigrant who has lived and worked in the Brooklyn area for several years. 

Rivera’s new attorneys have also filed a motion to withdraw any previous motions filed by Rivera's previous lawyer.

Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation agents say they determined Rivera was a suspect after seeing his car on surveillance video the same day Mollie Tibbetts disappeared.  They say Rivera was following Mollie.

Tibbetts’ body was found in a cornfield off a gravel road near Guernsey, Iowa. A preliminary autopsy report says she died from multiple sharp force injuries.

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