A suspect in the murders of four University of Idaho students last month was arrested in Pennsylvania on Friday, a law enforcement official confirmed to The Associated Press.
Brian Christopher Kohberger, 28, is being held without bail pending extradition on a charge of first-degree murder, according to arrest documents filed by Pennsylvania State Police in Monroe County Court. An arrest warrant has been issued by the Moscow, Idaho Police Department and the Lata County District Attorney’s Office.
News of the arrests came hours after Moscow police said they would hold a news conference Friday afternoon to announce developments in the stabbing deaths of Ethan Chapin, Madison Maughan, Kelly Goncalves and Zana Kornodel.
The disturbing nighttime attack — police said the four were likely asleep when they were stabbed — sparked a wave of fear in the city of 26,000 people, where mass killings are rare. Two other roommates in the home fell asleep during the attack, police said.
No motive given for nighttime attack
Police and prosecutors had indicated they knew of no motive for the attack at the off-campus rental home and released few details about the murder weapon. A small army of federal and state investigators has been assisting in the case, processing thousands of tips and videos.
Specifically, investigators spent weeks looking for a white 2011-2013 Hyundai Elantra.
On Thursday, Moscow Police Chief James Fry released a video statement saying the house was being turned over to a commercial crime scene reconstruction team for blood and forensics to be used by investigators. Biological hazards such as chemicals can be removed.
“We’ve recently received more tips here and we’re continuing to investigate and follow up on them,” Fry said Thursday. “We want to thank the community for their support and thank all the people across the country for all they have given us.”
Police initially said the killings were an “isolated targeted attack,” without elaborating on why, and said there was “no danger” to anyone else. Fry then backtracked on Nov. 16, saying, “We can’t say there’s no threat to the community, and like we said, please be vigilant, report any suspicious activity and always be aware of your surroundings. Stay informed.” “
The uncertainty prompted many University of Idaho students to take online classes for the rest of the semester.
Who were the victims?
A memorial service for Goncalves and Mogen, both 21, was planned for Friday afternoon in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, where they graduated from high school. Both were old women. Mogan was studying Marketing and General Studies at Goncalo College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences.
Kornodel, 20, was a junior marketing student who had been dating Chapin, who police say was sleeping at his house.
Chapin, 20, was a freshman majoring in recreation, sport and tourism management from Washington state.
All four victims were affiliated with fraternal or family organizations.
“Ethan, Zana, Maddie and Kelly came to the University of Idaho and found their place…they were full of promise and ready to make their mark on the world outside of Moscow,” said University of Idaho President Scott Green. At a vigil in November
No bail for OR woman who allegedly pushed her 3-year-old daughter onto train tracks