KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video Who is James Biela? Channel 2 Investigates

Who is James Biela? Channel 2 Investigates

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Kellene Stockwell
Channel 2 News
 

DNA evidence links Biela to Denison's January kidnapping, sexual assault and murder. And police say he raped a University of Nevada student in December. "This suspect is truly a monster, someone that needs to be put away," says Reno Police Chief Michael Poehlman.

At 27, Biela is the youngest of five siblings.

His mother lives in Spokane, Washington while his father resides in nearby Sun Valley. "He's sitting in county (jail.) I've been there many, many times."

Joe Biela admits drugs were a part of his Biela's life. "I don't come from (a) ‘Leave it to Beaver' family. I was physically and mentally hurt."

He once wore the uniform of a Marine. But Joe says Biela was kicked out of the service.

News that James Biela lived in Spanish Springs was a shock to even his father. He lived there with his girlfriend of six years and their four-year-old son.

Carleen Harmon says in court documents they had a ‘tumultuous romantic relationship.' And this past winter she says Biela would disappear claiming to sleep in his truck.

He later sold the truck to someone in Idaho then moved to Washington in March where he worked on a plumbing project. "That was after the assault happened so he just carried on life like a normal person," says Kristin Havelka.

All the while blue ribbons donned northern Nevada and searchers tirelessly looked for clues. "This individual held this community at bay for way too long," says District Attorney Dick Gammick.

Prior to Monday's arrest, Biela got a DUI in Sparks in 2003 and then was arrested again one year later for getting into a fight.

The owner of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu says Biela trained martial arts last year, at times even alongside officers. He got his blue belt but then was never seen again until earlier this week.

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