United States

University of Georgia Nursing Student Murder Suspect Accused Of “Disfiguring Victim’s Skull”

22-year-old Laken Riley was ‘dragged’ to a secluded area in an attempt to conceal her death, latest reports revealed.


Alpha Chi Omega sorority members mourn the loss of their sorority sister, Laken Riley. Photo: AP

Recently filed arrest affidavits reveal chilling details surrounding the killing of a nursing student on the University of Georgia campus. According to the affidavits, the suspect, Jose Ibarra, allegedly used an object as a weapon in the crime and is accused of "disfiguring her skull."

22-year-old Laken Riley, was reportedly dragged to a secluded area on Thursday, as per one of the affidavits. The allegation of dragging Riley's body was filed to support the charge of concealing the death of another person.

Although authorities haven't disclosed the exact cause of Riley's death, they have confirmed that it resulted from blunt force trauma. However, further details regarding the weapon used or the specifics of the attack were not included in the arrest affidavits.


The crimes are said to have occurred between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Thursday, according to the documents filed in Athens-Clarke County Superior Court.

Undated photo of Laken Riley.
Undated photo of Laken Riley. Photo: AP

Ibarra, a 26-year-old Venezuelan citizen, is facing multiple murder and assault charges. Immigration authorities revealed that he unlawfully crossed into the United States in 2022.

Riley, a nursing student at Augusta University's Athens campus, was found dead on Thursday after failing to return from a morning run near the University of Georgia campus.

A vigil for Riley, organized by her sorority sisters, drew hundreds of students and faculty members at the University of Georgia campus. Chloe Mullis, president of the University of Georgia chapter of Alpha Chi Omega, remembered Riley as "one of the brightest lights that has ever been."


The tragic incident has also become a focal point for political debate, with Republicans including former President Donald Trump and Gov. Brian Kemp using it to criticize President Biden's immigration policies.

Ibarra's immigration history has come under scrutiny, with records showing he was detained by Border Patrol in 2022 after entering from Mexico. He was later released for further processing.

The case has prompted Athens-Clarke County District Attorney Deborah Gonzalez to appoint a special prosecutor, attorney Sheila Ross, to bring justice on behalf of Laken Riley. The White House has extended condolences to Riley's family and deferred further inquiries to ICE and local law enforcement.