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Officials clarify statements around the targeted nature of the University of Idaho homicides

Deseret News 12/5/2022 Hanna Seariac
A flyer seeking information about the killings of four University of Idaho students who were found dead on Nov. 13, 2022, is displayed on a table along with buttons and bracelets, Wednesday, Nov. 30, during a vigil in memory of the victims in Moscow, Idaho. © Ted S. Warren, Associated Press A flyer seeking information about the killings of four University of Idaho students who were found dead on Nov. 13, 2022, is displayed on a table along with buttons and bracelets, Wednesday, Nov. 30, during a vigil in memory of the victims in Moscow, Idaho.

Update: According to CBS News on Monday, authorities clarified that they still think it was a targeted attack, but they do not know if the residence was targeted or if one or more of the students were targeted.

Officials are saying now that they don’t know whether four University of Idaho homicides were a result of a targeted attack.

Previously, the prosecutor’s office said the homicides were a targeted attack on the students, but the police say that it might not be.

According to CNN, police say the information about the attack being targeted was released by the prosecutor’s office and it was a “miscommunication.” Officials are still investigating whether or not the individuals or the residence was targeted.

On Sunday, Nov. 13, at noon, Ethan Chapin, Kaylee Goncalves, Xana Kernodle and Madison Mogen were found dead inside a Moscow, Idaho, residence. The four were University of Idaho students. The police have not apprehended a suspect. Per the Deseret News, investigators believe that an edged blade was used during the suspected homicide.

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According to the Deseret News, authorities responded to a 911 call reporting an unconscious body. When officers went to investigate, they found the bodies of the four students. CBS News reported that Moscow Mayor Art Bettge said the students likely died hours before noon, somewhere between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m.

The Latah County coroner released the autopsy results and listed the causes of death as “homicide — murder.”

In a statement released on Tuesday, Moscow officials say that they do not have a suspect in custody and do not have the murder weapon. Two roommates were in the residence when the attack occurred. Officials do not believe that either of these roommates were involved in the homicides.

Officials also do not believe that anyone was at the residence during the 911 call — the names of who was there are unknown. They do not currently suspect a male who was seen in a Grub Truck surveillance video whom Goncalves and Mogen were recorded near when they went to food trucks a couple of hours before they were killed, or a private driver whom Goncalves and Mogen used that night. Investigators also currently do not think that a male who Goncalves and Mogen called multiple times that night committed the homicides.

Police have not said how close they are to apprehending a suspect.

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