Two teenagers in Iowa have been charged with first-degree murder and first-degree conspiracy to commit murder for allegedly killing their Spanish teacher.
The human remains of 66-year-old Nohema Graber were found at Chautauqua Park in the city of Fairfield on Wednesday afternoon, just hours after she was reported missing by her family members.
Police said her body was found under a tarp, wheelbarrow and railroad ties, according to ABC affiliate KCRG. Preliminary investigation showed that the teacher had “suffered inflicted trauma to her head,” criminal complaints filed in Jefferson County on Thursday afternoon showed.
Willard Noble Chaiden Miller and Jeremy Everett Goodale, both 16 years old, will be tried as adults. They have allegedly admitted to killing Graber but their motive is not yet clear. It is also not clear if the teens were taught by Graber.
Mr Miller told investigators that he was in the park at the time of the murder, provided the materials used to kill Graber, and then helped to conceal it.
According to investigators, Graber was last seen near the park on Tuesday, police said, adding that she frequently visited it during afternoon hours.
The investigation turned to the teenagers after officers received a tip about a social media exchange indicating that Mr Goodale was aware of his teacher’s death and disappearance. The exchange also mentioned information on the students’ plan to kill the Spanish teacher, motive and their efforts to hide the murder. It also showed Mr Miller’s involvement and presence at the time of the death.
Search warrants were issued to both the teens at their residence, following which officials collected clothes that likely had blood on them.
The crime is being investigation by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and Jefferson County Sherriff’s Office.