On July 18, 2018, University of Iowa student, Mollie Tibbets, age 20, went out for a jog in Brooklyn, Iowa and disappeared.
Following an exhaustive search, Tibbett’s body was found over a month later in a Poweshiek County cornfield. Police had been led there by illegal alien Cristhian Bahena Rivera, then 24, who had confessed to the murder. Surveillance camera footage had shown Rivera’s car following Tibbetts. Rivera was charged with first-degree murder and is being held on a $5 million bond.
According to Breitbart News:
Rivera told police that Tibbetts was jogging when he saw her, according to prosecutors. That is when he said he approached Tibbetts and started talking to her. After Tibbetts told Bahena Rivera that she would call the police if he did not stop following her, the illegal alien allegedly chased her and says he “blacked out” after this.
Rivera is being represented by two tax-payer funded attorneys, Chad and Jennifer Frese.
They have just filed a 29-page motion which was obtained by the Des Moines Register. They claim that Rivera’s constitutional rights were violated because the local Iowa police who questioned him failed to make it “clear that he could have contacted the Mexican consulate before speaking to law enforcement.”
The filing states:
Providing this information to Bahena Rivera — a confused, exhausted and vulnerable Mexican national was seeking trustworthy help — would have triggered an invocation of consular notification and a decision to await the consulate’s assistance before making any other statements.
They also claim that Rivera was not read his Miranda Rights “until hours into a 12-hour interview — a violation of his constitutional rights that they claim should nullify his alleged murder confession.”
The attorneys wrote that he has “very limited Mexican education” and is “wholly unfamiliar with the U.S. criminal justice system.”
The case is due to go to trial on November 12 and has already been postponed once as Rivera’s attorneys try to have his confession thrown out of the case. They have already managed to “move the trial to a less white, more Hispanic-populated county in the state.”
Should Rivera’s confession be thrown out because he wasn’t read his Miranda rights until several hours into his interview? Should he escape punishment because police forgot to read them for a few hours?
I am not a lawyer, but it’s possible the police did not arrest Rivera until several hours into questioning because that is when they determined he was the killer.
The law states (and I’m sure that exceptions apply) if an individual is not read their Miranda rights, the evidence gathered cannot be used to establish guilt in court.
What happens then in the Rivera case, when the rights were read several hours into the confession? The court filing indicates that, at some point during the interview, he was read his Miranda rights.
Rivera then continued speaking to police for several more hours, signed his confession and then led police to Tibet’s body. The fact that he murdered her is not in question.
This case opens up the hot debate between liberals and conservatives over just which constitutional rights people who enter the U.S. illegally are entitled to. Certain basic human rights apply to citizens and non-citizens alike, but should undocumented immigrants receive the full constitutional rights an American citizen would?
Should American taxpayers be forced to pay for Rivera’s legal representation?
Finally, and most importantly, what about Mollie Tibbetts’ constitutional rights?