Grand jury indicts man accused of killing Georgia nursing student Laken Riley

Jose Ibarra

ATHENS, Ga. — A grand jury in Georgia on Tuesday indicted the man accused in the fatal beating of Georgia nursing student Laken Riley on murder and nine other charges.

>> Read more trending news

The grand jury in Clarke County handed down 10 indictments against Jose Ibarra, 26, a Venezuelan immigrant, WSB-TV reported.

The counts included malice murder and felony murder in connection with the death of Riley, 22, who was found dead in a wooded area on Feb. 22 after she did not return from jogging, according to the television station.

Other charges handed down were kidnapping, aggravated assault with intent to rape, aggravated battery, obstructing an attempt to call 911, tampering with evidence and being a “peeping tom,” the Athens Banner-Herald reported.

The peeping tom incident involved a University of Georgia staff member on the day of Riley’s death, according to WSB. The indictment accuses him of going to an apartment at University Village Housing Building “S” and peeping through the window at the woman, the television station reported.

Ibarra will be arraigned at a date to be set by the court, the Banner-Herald reported.

According to the newspaper, Riley graduated from the University of Georgia in 2023 and was continuing her studies at the Athens campus of Augusta University, an academic medical center.

The indictment alleges that Ibarra killed Riley by “inflicting blunt force trauma to her head and by asphyxiating her” and seriously disfigured her head by striking her “multiple times” with a rock, ABC News reported.

The incident spurred controversy nationally. Ibarra entered the U.S. illegally and was living in Athens, the Banner-Herald reported. He remains in the Athens-Clarke County Jail without bond.

During Joe Biden’s State of the Union address on March 7, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., shouted “say her name!” at the president, The Associated Press reported.

The president then held up a pin with Riley’s name on it and spoke briefly about the case.

Lawyers for Ibarra did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Wednesday, according to the news organization.

Comments on this article