The Horrors of Moscow, Idaho


Artwork by Elysse Weber

The four University of Idaho students who were slain on November 13th, 2022.

Elysse Weber, Staff Writer

The small town of Moscow, Idaho has been known for its peaceful college campus and parties, however, on Nov. 13, everything changed. The town went silent as the tragic news came out that four college roommates were brutally stabbed to death in their own home. 

Ethan Chapin, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Kaylee Goncalves were found diseased with stab wounds on the morning of Nov. 13, 2022. The case was at first very disclosed, as there was not much information provided within the first week. The police believed the killings to be a quadruple homicide. There was no suspect for weeks, which led many people from around the U.S. eager for answers. Who would commit such a crime? 

The information released about the case made it seem more like a puzzle; nothing added up, and there were many missing pieces. The missing pieces were said to be important to the investigation, so they were keeping most information private. The police said that six students were present in the house during the time of the murders, however, only two survived. The public wondered if the surviving roommates had anything to do with the crime. If not, would they have heard anything? 

The home had three floors. The two surviving roommates were sleeping on the first floor. Kernodle and Chapin were found on the second floor while Mogen and Goncalves were found on the top floor. Why did the suspect only kill on the top two floors? There were no signs of forced entry, but investigators believed that the killer entered the sliding glass door on the second floor which led to a direct entry to the kitchen. 

As weeks went by, the information slowly increased. It was released that right across a field from the home was a fraternity house that both Chapin and Kernodle were seen at the night they were slain. They did not get back to the house until around 1:45 a.m. Goncalves and Mogen, however, were last seen at a bar at 1:56 a.m. Police believed the murders happened around 4:00a.m., so what happened between those times?

After weeks of questions and theories, police came out with a suspect on Dec. 30, 2022. Bryan Kohberger, a 28-year-old male. He was convicted of the quadruple homicide of the four University of Idaho students. Kohberger was known to be a Ph.D. student at Washington State University’s Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology. After Kohberger’s arrest, Reddit posts made by him were deliberately posted online, with questions such as, “Did you prepare for the crime before leaving your home? Please detail what you were thinking and feeling at this point” and “After arriving, what steps did you take prior to locating the victim or target (i.e., person or object)? Please detail your thoughts and feelings.” The media took this information as a theory that Kohberger was planning the murders all along.

According to the Affidavit that was recently released, the police found Kohberger’s DNA on the button of a knife case that was left at the scene. They were able to match the DNA by going through the garbage outside of the house of Kohbergers parents. There was a biological father match. “We’re sure this is our guy,” said Chief Fry, the Chief of Moscow, Idaho. 

Kohberger is now held in custody in Idaho and will participate in many court hearings to prove his innocence. If he is found guilty, he will be sentenced to a life sentence in jail or even the death penalty. 

The families of the four students are now getting the justice they have been waiting for, and will finally feel a little better going to sleep at night knowing the killer that caused this traumatic experience will be behind bars for life.