4 Students Stabbed at University of Idaho

By Bridie Beamish

Culture Editor

After an unknown perpetrator fatally stabbed four University of Idaho students in their off-campus home in Moscow, Idaho, on Nov. 13, police are still searching for a suspect. After responding to a call about an unconscious person, made by one of the two surviving roommates, police found Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, and Xana Kernodle, 20, dead. Kernodle’s boyfriend Ethan Chapin, 20, who was only visiting the house, was also among the victims.

  The assailant stabbed the sleeping victims, located on the second and third floors of the house, between 3:00 AM and 4:00 AM. It is unknown how the perpetrator got into the house or if they were someone the victims knew. Two additional roommates were sleeping in the basement, where they reportedly could not hear any noise and thus were not aware of the attack until the following morning. 

Some of the victims had defensive wounds, and the murderer stabbed all of them multiple times. Although Goncalves’ father believes that his daughter was the target of the violence, as she had the most severe attack wounds and previously mentioned a stalker, the motives behind the vicious attack remain unclear. 

Many facts of the case are still unknown to the general public, but local and state police, along with the FBI, confirm that they are diligently working to narrow suspects and search for critical evidence, while also clarifying misconceptions and false statements made on social media sites. Investigators discovered roughly 113 pieces of evidence on sight and took over 4,000 photos of the crime scene. Due to police reliance on forensic evidence, which requires extensive analysis, police are unlikely to solve this case as quickly as citizens would like.

The event has shaken the community of Moscow, as the city of 25,000 people had not seen any murders since 2015. Many college students scrambled to get flights home, with the uncertainty of the murderer’s identity affecting their perception of their safety. With fears of more violence in their college town, many students who chose to stay report they are now carrying mace and pocket knives with them, no longer going out at night, locking their doors and windows, and making sure to stay with friends at all times. 

Additionally, the police are receiving thousands of calls from worried community members, reporting small things such as a distant scream or an open door. The Moscow Police Department stated it received tips in more than 2,640 emails, 2,770 phone calls, and 1,000 submissions to an FBI link. 

In an emotional letter read at the victims’ memorial, one of the surviving roommates declared, “They all lit up any room they walked into and were gifts to this world. I wish every day that I could give them all one last hug and say how much I loved them.” The other roommate stated, “Maddie and Kaylee were like second moms to me,” and, “I know somewhere Xana and Ethan are together keeping each other company watching us and telling us it’s OK.” 

(Sources: ABC News, CNN, Moscow Police Department, NY Times)

Categories: National, News

Leave a Reply