Laken Riley murder: GoFundMe for slain Georgia student raises $81,432 in a day - Hindustan Times
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Laken Riley murder: GoFundMe for slain Georgia student raises whopping $81,432 in just a day

BySumanti Sen
Feb 25, 2024 12:08 PM IST

Laken Riley was found dead near a lake on the University of Georgia’s campus in Athens, following which illegal immigrant Jose Antonio Ibarra was arrested

The murder of Georgia nursing student Laken Hope Riley, 22, has sent shockwaves across the US. A GoFundMe launched for Riley has raised a whopping $81,432 USD in just a day, much more than the $35,000 goal that has been set. 

The murder of Georgia nursing student Laken Hope Riley, 22, has sent shockwaves across the US (GoFundMe)
The murder of Georgia nursing student Laken Hope Riley, 22, has sent shockwaves across the US (GoFundMe)

Riley was found dead near a lake on the University of Georgia’s campus in Athens last week with “visible injuries,” according to UGA Police Chief Jeff Clark. Riley, a nursing student at Augusta University, was found after a friend reported that she went for a run and failed to return.

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Days after her death, police took into custody 26-year-old Jose Antonio Ibarra, an illegal immigrant. Ibarra was arrested on Friday, February 23, and charged with malice and felony murder, aggravated battery, kidnapping, concealing the death of another and other charges. Police said the incident was a “crime of opportunity.”

What does Laken Riley’s GoFundMe say?

The GoFundMe revealed that Riley was a class of 2025 BSN student at Augusta University Athens campus and an active member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority at UGA. It described her as “a sweet and compassionate soul whose life was sadly cut short.”

“No words can express the pain and heartache that Laken’s family and friends are experiencing. She was a wonderful friend, sister, daughter, etc. who touched the lives of everyone around her. Her infectious smile and contagious laugh lit up every room she entered. Not only did she have a kind-hearted spirit, but she also excelled in academics as she previously made the Augusta University Dean’s list in the Fall of 2023,” the page says.

“This GoFundMe is being established to assist the family with funeral expenses, establish a scholarship in her name, raise homicide awareness, or any other opportunity the family could use it for during this difficult time. Thank you so much for your support, please continue to keep Laken’s family and friends in your thoughts and prayers,” it added. 

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