NEW: Laken Riley’s mother speaks out about ‘avoidable’ murder of daughter by asylum-seeking illegal immigrant

Despite the tragedy, she expressed her love for Jesus Christ and promoted a message faith.

Libby Emmons Brooklyn NY
Laken Riley's mother is experiencing the kind of grief every parent fears. Her beloved daughter was murdered, pointlessly, and the suspect is a man who was never even supposed to be in the country. Riley's Friday funeral in Woodstock, Georgia, was followed by a public message from her mother, Allyson Phillips, who called it an "avoidable tragedy" and praised God for keeping close to her and her family during their horror and grief.

"As I sat down to write this message, I really just have no words," Phillips said in a Facebook post. "My family has faced the most devastating, unimaginable loss that anyone could ever be force [sic] to endure. I would like to thank my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, for being with me and my family during this heartbreaking time. I encourage everyone to have a personal relationship with Jesus. I give Him all the glory for getting us through this."

"It would be really easy to lose our faith in mankind because of this senseless and avoidable tragedy," she said, noting that she and her family have received an overwhelming "amount of love, support and help" during the "horrific nightmare."

"The amount of love, support and help that we have received during this horrific nightmare is overwhelming," she said. "I can’t begin to tell you all how much we appreciate all of the text, calls, flowers, meals, groceries, bows, pictures, personal gifts, memorials, gift cards and donations to Laken’s foundation. We are beyond grateful for everyone who has stepped up to be here for us through this difficult time. The outpouring of love has been so enormous - that I felt this was the best way to thank you all in a timely manner.

"I hope that each and every one of you know how much we love you and appreciate all you have done," she continued. "We have no words to possibly express our heart felt gratitude. Please know that every act of kindness has warmed our hearts and brought us joy during our worst nightmare. We appreciate all of the time, effort and prayers that our family, friends and community have showered us with to help ease our pain. We love you all and hope that you feel from the bottom of our hearts how much every single thing that has been done for us has meant. I love you all. Please continue to pray for our family as we put one foot in front of the other moving forward."

She updated her Facebook profile picture to a heart with her daughter's name in it and the caption "Say Her Name."

Riley was murdered while jogging on the campus of University of Georgia in Athens. She was a nursing student at nearby Augusta University. The man suspected of murdering her was Venezuelan illegal immigrant Jose Ibarra, who entered the country in September along with his wife and her 5-year-old son. The family applied for asylum and were transported to New York.

Ibarra was arrested for child endangerment after riding with the boy on the back of a moped without any protection. He was released and the record sealed. The couple separated and Ibarra went to Georgia, where his brother was living. His brother was working on the UGA campus allegedly using a fake green card. Video evidence shows Ibarra allegedly disposing of bloody clothes and other evidence.

President Joe Biden has expanded the asylum process, allowed those seeking asylum to wait in the US pending trial, often 5 to 7 years down the road, and has let in over 8 million illegal immigrants during his first term in office. 
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