‘Non-citizen’ suspect named in death of Georgia nursing student; suspect’s brother arrested for fake green card

A suspect in the murder of 22-year-old Georgia nursing student Laken Riley has been taken into custody, the University of Georgia Police Department announced, and he is a “non-citizen.”

Jose Antonio Ibarra, believed to be from Venezuela, was charged with malice murder, felony murder, aggravated battery, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, kidnapping, hindering a 911 call, and concealing the death of another, UGA Police Chief Jeffrey L. Clark said during a Friday evening news briefing.

(Video: YouTube)

Ibarra, 26, lives in Athens, Georgia, Clark said, “but is not a U.S. citizen.”

“Right now I don’t know his full status,” Clark told one reporter, adding that it “hasn’t been confirmed” whether he is “undocumented.”

According to NewsNation network correspondent Ali Bradley, however, “Multiple DHS sources confirm… Ibarra is here illegally from Venezuela.”

“CBP documents show he crossed in September of 2022 into El Paso, Texas and was released due to lack of detention space,” she reports.

Riley’s blood is on President Biden’s hands, according to one Georgia lawmaker.

“The blood of Laken Riley is on the hands of Joe Biden, Alejandro Mayorkas, and the government of Athens-Clarke County,” stated Republican Georgia Rep. Mike Collins. “The Venezuelan suspect in Laken Riley’s murder is one of millions of illegal aliens that the Biden administration has released into this country to be welcomed with open arms by Democrat-run sanctuary jurisdictions.”

“This man had no business being in America, much less the UGA community to brutally murder this young American while she was on a run,” the lawmaker said.

“To put this in simpler terms: if this border was secure, and Athens not a sanctuary city, Laken Riley would be alive,” Collins continued. “She would still be talking to her family, hanging out with friends, studying to be a nurse, and working toward serving her community and saving the lives of others.”

“Instead, she is dead because the people who took an oath to preserve our Constitution and faithfully execute our laws refuse to do so because they think it benefits them politically,” he fumed. “If the leaders responsible for this have any honor they will resign. If they don’t, the people need to remove them.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) said that deportation “is not enough” for Ibarra. “He deserves the death penalty.”

The evidence against Ibarra “is robust,” according to Clark. “It is supported by key input from the community, physical evidence, and expert police work.”

“Importantly,” he added, “we were assisted by video footage from our campus security.”

Riley attended Augusta University and was on the Dean’s List. On Thursday, she was found dead on the University of Georgia campus, where she was previously enrolled.

Ibarra had no known connection to Riley and is not a UGA student, according to Clark, who said he believed the murder was a “crime of opportunity.”

Meanwhile, Ibarra’s big brother, 29-year-old Diego Ibarra, was arrested on Friday and charged with possessing a fake green card, Fox News Digital reports.

An Athens-Clarke County Police Department officer approached Diego earlier in the day because he matched his brother’s description, according to the criminal complaint and sworn affidavit.

Diego, who also lives in Athens, whipped out a U.S. permanent resident card.

“The card was determined to be fraudulent, and Diego Ibarra was processed for expedited removal, but he claimed a credible fear of returning to his home country of Venezuela,” Fox News Digital states. “He was then released from immigration custody pending adjudication of his claim for asylum on April 30, 2024.”

Since the illegal migrant entered America, he has been arrested three times by Athens law enforcement.

“In late September, he was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and driving without a license,” according to Fox. “About a month later, he was arrested for shoplifting, and in December he was arrested for failure to appear for a fingerprintable offense.”

If convicted, Diego faces up to ten years in prison.


Melissa Fine


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