Idaho College Student Murders

Idaho College Student Murders

Kalli Heck

On November 12th, 4 college students, Ethan Chapin, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernolde, and Kaylee Goncalves went to bed after a night out , to never wake back up. These four Idaho University students were killed in their sleep that night. With no trace of the killer, no one knows what happened. 


Students Kernodle, Goncalves, and Mogen were all roommates at an off campus house. They lived with two other female roommates, who survived the killing and slept right through it. Police do not think that the surviving roommates have anything to do with the murders. People have questioned how they would have slept through their roommates being murdered. To answer that, the police interviewed other students who had partied at their house and they said that from the basement, which is where the surviving roommates slept, you could barely hear music or talking from the upper levels. One of the victims was Ethan Chapin, who did not live at that house but he and Xana Kernolde were dating and he was sleeping over that night. 


Police believe that the murders were done between 3am and 4am on Sunday November 13th. Each of the roommates and boyfriend were out that night doing something. Kaylee Goncalves and Madison Mogen,longtime best friends,were out at Corner Club bar from 10:30 pm to 1:30 am. Later at about 1:40am, they were seen on camera at a local food truck, The Grub. They then used a private party for a ride home. Kernodle and Chapin were out separately at a Sigma Chi frat party. The police do not know what happened while they were there but they got home at around 1:45 am. The two surviving roommates were also out that night and came home around 1am. 


When the two surviving roommates woke up later that Sunday, they realized that one of their roommates had passed out and was not waking up so they called over friends to help them. It was when the friends came over they decided to call 911. The police believe that none of the friends who came over were involved in the murder. 


The autopsies were done and the police have figured out the victims were stabbed multiple times. The police also believe the students were asleep when attacked and found defensive wounds on some of them. They also died quickly and did not bleed for hours. Kaylee Goncalves’ dad made this statement to the public, “Nobody suffered and nobody felt like that kind of pain,” Steve Goncalves said. He also said that victims suffered “large punctures” from a “brutal” weapon. The murder weapon has not been found yet but is believed to be a fixed blade knife. 


The victims’ families are in disbelief and heartbroken. Steve Goncalves also said this, “They went to highschool together, then they started looking at colleges. They came here together. They eventually get into the same apartment together. And in the end, they died together, in the same room, in the same bed.” Speaking about Kaylee and Maddie. 


This tragedy is still being investigated and sadly there are not a lot of updates. The police are having a very hard time finding the killer. The police did state that the cold probably won’t go cold. But because where this happened, there were not a lot of crimes so the police are struggling with this kind of case.