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Brutal baseball-bat killing of elderly teacher: 2 teens facing murder charges

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Image source: WLS-TV video screenshot

Two Iowa teenagers have been charged with first-degree murder after authorities say they brutally beat to death a 66-year-old Spanish teacher.

The elderly female teacher is said to have died as a result of head trauma.

What are the details?

Police say 16-year-olds Willard Miller and Jeremy Goodale killed 66-year-old Nohema Graber, their Spanish teacher at Fairfield High School in Fairfield, Iowa, in November.

According to reports, Goodale and Miller publicly discussed how they watched Graber, followed her, and killed her with a bat. The two are said to have hidden her body in a local park underneath both a tarp and a wheelbarrow.

Her lifeless body was discovered just one day after she was reported missing.

Authorities said that Goodale wrote Snapchat messages — which are ephemeral in nature — describing how the attack unfolded, which prompted an acquaintance to save the messages in order to prove how the two "were involved in the planning, execution, and disposal of evidence" in connection with Graber's murder.

Miller is said to have admitted to the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation that he provided the wheelbarrow that obscured Graber's body.

Fox News on Thursday reported that Judge Shawn Showers this week denied defense attorneys’ requests that a hearing on whether the two teens will be tried in adult court be kept private. According to the report, the judge said the defense "failed to show how allowing the public at the hearing would be unfair to their clients" and declined the request.

Showers has scheduled Goodale’s trial for Aug. 23 and Miller's trial for Nov. 1.

The Des Moines Register reported that In Iowa, anyone age 16 years or more and who has been charged with a forcible felony is automatically waived to adult court and is "subject to the same criminal procedures and penalties as adults."

The outlet added that while the adult sentence for murder is life in prison in Iowa, in 2016, the Iowa Supreme Court prohibited judges from handing down sentences of life without parole for offenders under age 18.

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