Richmond County authorities have connected the rape and assault of a south Augusta woman to last month's slaying of a Fort Gordon Army sergeant.
"Based upon information gathered in the past 72 hours, combined with scientifict evidence and all other evidence, an arrest warrant has now been issued against (Reinaldo) Rivera for the murder of Marni Glista," said Maj. Ken Autry reading from a press release.
Mr. Rivera, a Bridgestone/Firestone employee and father of two small children, now faces charges in sexual assault of an 18-year-old woman in south Augusta on Tuesday, and the killing of Sgt. Glista.
Sgt. Glista was found suffering from an array of injuries in her rental home on Oak Ridge Drive the day after Labor Day. She was apparently attacked by an intruder as she returned home from Food Lion grocery store. She died four days later, never having regained consciousness.
Richmond County Sheriff's investigators never released details about the attack.
District Attorney Danny Craig said the investigation was ongoing and Richmond investigators were working with Aiken County authorities to see if Mr. Rivera may be linked to other crimes.
Maj. Autry had previously said the attack on the 18-year-old had similarities to the Aug. 4 slaying of Jessica Lynne Carpenter, 17, in Aiken.
A break in the Glista case came this week, after an assault victim lived to tell about her ordeal. The girl told investigators about meeting a Hispanic man driving a teal-green Honda, who coaxed her into leading him from a Belvedere Huddle House to her Richmond Gardens home.
After a 40-hour search, Mr. Rivera was found early Thursday in a motel room in Clearwater, 7 miles from his home on Sudlow Ridge Road outside North Augusta. Police reported his wrists were slashed.
Mr. Rivera is in police custody at a local hospital.
Reach Johnny Edwards at (706) 823-3225 or email@example.com.