Authorities arrest man in 1995 death of Idaho teen

Published 02-21-2019

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BURLEY, Idaho (AP) - Authorities say they have arrested a man in the death of a 14-year-old girl whose body was found in a southern Idaho river more than two decades ago.

Gilberto Flores Rodriguez, 56, of Burley, was arrested Wednesday and charged with first-degree murder in the death of Regina Krieger, the Cassia County Sheriff's Office said.

Court records did not indicate whether Rodriguez has obtained an attorney. He's being held without bond at the Mini-Cassia Criminal Justice Center.

Krieger disappeared from her father's home in Burley in February 1995, just days before her 15th birthday. Horseback riders found her body the following April along the Snake River. Her throat had been slashed, and she had been stabbed in the heart.

An autopsy determined her body was in the river for at least 30 days.

Regina's younger brother, Cliff Krieger, said Regina had become involved with drug dealers who were using children to deliver drugs. The night she went missing, she told their father that she wanted to move back to Twin Falls to live with her mother, because she was uncomfortable with a situation she had gotten into and wanted out of it.

"What she didn't know was there wasn't any way out," he said.

The South Idaho Press, a newspaper that closed in 2008, reported in 1996 that Rodriguez was considered a suspect in Regina's death. Still, the case went cold until 2017, when Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Chris Sheehan in Boise said he and another investigator had been assigned to the case.

"I knew we were getting closer, and I was fully aware that it was going to happen," Regina's mother, Rhonda Hunnel, who now lives in Las Vegas, said Wednesday. "My excitement level is very high. I couldn't be more pleased."

"What she didn't know was there wasn't any way out," he said.

The South Idaho Press, a newspaper that closed in 2008, reported in 1996 that Rodriguez was considered a suspect in Regina's death. Still, the case went cold until 2017, when Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Chris Sheehan in Boise said he and another investigator had been assigned to the case.

"I knew we were getting closer, and I was fully aware that it was going to happen," Regina's mother, Rhonda Hunnel, who now lives in Las Vegas, said Wednesday. "My excitement level is very high. I couldn't be more pleased."

"I knew we were getting closer, and I was fully aware that it was going to happen," Regina's mother, Rhonda Hunnel, who now lives in Las Vegas, said Wednesday. "My excitement level is very high. I couldn't be more pleased."

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