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Judge delays sentencing after twists in Iowa woman’s killing

Cristhian Bahena Rivera watches as the jury enters the courtroom before announcing the verdict...
Cristhian Bahena Rivera watches as the jury enters the courtroom before announcing the verdict in his trial, Friday, May 28, 2021, at the Scott County Courthouse in Davenport, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, Pool)(Charlie Neibergall | AP)
Published: Jul. 14, 2021 at 10:32 AM CDT
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A judge has agreed to delay the sentencing of the man convicted of killing University of Iowa student Mollie Tibbetts after his lawyers said they need time to investigate new information implicating other people.

Cristhian Bahena Rivera was scheduled to be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Thursday at the Poweshiek County Courthouse in Montezuma, about 50 miles west of Iowa City.

Judge Joel Yates issued an order Wednesday saying the sentencing would be delayed until after he holds hearings on whether to grant the defense’s requests to compel prosecutors to release information about other suspects and for a new trial.

Bahena Rivera was convicted of first-degree murder in May in Tibbetts’ 2018 killing.

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