Cristhian Bahena Rivera, the suspect in the abduction and stabbing death of Mollie Tibbetts in Iowa has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.
Rivera entered his plea Wednesday at the Poweshiek County Courthouse in Montezuma, Iowa.
Rivera, a farmhand, is charged in the killing of Tibbetts, a 20-year-old University of Iowa student who disappeared while out for a run July 18 in Brooklyn, Iowa.
Investigators recovered her body a month later in a cornfield. A medical examiner has said Tibbetts was stabbed to death.
Rivera is a Mexican national who has been accused of being in the country illegally. The 24-year-old worked at a dairy farm a few miles from where Tibbetts disappeared.
He waived his right to be tried within 90 days. Trial is set for April 16.
© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.