Family of man accused of killing golf star says they're 'mourning'

Collin Daniel Richards makes his initial court appearance after being charged with the murder of Iowa State golfer Celia Barquin Arozamena on Tuesday Sept. 18 2018 at the Story County Courthouse in Nevada Iowa. (Kelsey Kremer  The Des Moines Register

Collin Daniel Richards makes his initial court appearance after being charged with the murder of Iowa State golfer Celia Barquin Arozamena on Tuesday Sept. 18 2018 at the Story County Courthouse in Nevada Iowa. (Kelsey Kremer The Des Moines Register

Her unattended golf bag was discovered by golfers at the Coldwater Golf Links in Ames early on Monday, and police found her body in a pond a short distance away with stab wounds to the head, neck and upper torso.

Barquín was golfing alone, and the odd site of an abandoned golf bag led to the discovery of her body, Huff said.

They had both recently turned 22 and were residing in the same Iowa college town, but their lives couldn't have been more different before allegedly intersecting in the most violent way. Police say he attacked Barquin Arozamena while she was golfing near Iowa State. Jobless and homeless, Richards had been living in a tent in an encampment near the course and had spoken of his desire to "rape and kill a woman", police said.

While they investigated the scene Monday, police spoke with a man who knew Richards and asked them, "What did he do to her?"

A police dog tracked the scent from the victim's body to a location in the wooded area, where police encountered Richards, who had "fresh scratches on his face consistent with a fight and was attempting to hide a laceration on his left hand". Paul Rounds, a public defender assigned to represent him, filed paperwork asserting that his client didn't wish to speak to investigators. A second acquaintance told police that Richards arrived at his home on Monday appearing "disheveled and covered in blood, sand and water". It was, said Iowa State football coach Matt Campbell, a "cowardly act of violence".

Professional golfer Sergio Garcia, one of Barquin's favorite players, tweeted that he was heartbroken by the news, saying he'd had the pleasure of meeting Barquin and calling her a "special person".




Born in Puente San Miguel, Spain, Barquín was completing a degree in civil engineering and was described by Iowa State director of athletics Jamie Pollard as "a spectacular student-athlete and ISU ambassador".

"She loved Iowa State and was an outstanding representative for our school". She ended her collegiate career with a fourth straight NCAA Regional appearance and earned All-Big 12 Team honors for the third time. Wherever life takes us, she said, each one of us will have our halves.

"We are all devastated", said Christie Martens, head coach of the Iowa State women's golf team.

Richards was released from prison in June after serving about seven months for violating his probations for several crimes he committed in Guthrie County, including an incident in January 2015 at a convenience store in Bayard.

Carlos, wearing a yellow flower in his lapel - that was Celia's favorite color - explained how they had first been in touch: at 3am one night, he got a phone call from a girl who shouted down the phone at him: "You're Spanish!"

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