CANTON, Ga. – A 20-year-old maintenance worker charged with murder is in isolation at the north Georgia jail where he's being held without bond in the beating death of 7-year-old Jorelys Rivera.
Ryan Brunn, who lived and worked at the apartment complex, made his first appearance in Cherokee County Superior Court on Thursday wearing an orange jumpsuit and bullet-proof vest. Sheriff's deputies screened everyone who entered the courtroom.
Authorities did not say whether threats have been made against Brunn's life.
Rivera was last seen Friday evening walking to her apartment from a playground inside the complex. Authorities said they believe she was taken to an empty apartment nearby, where she was sexually assaulted, stabbed and beaten to death. Her body was found Monday.
Brunn's family has said he is innocent.