Moscow police: University of Idaho killings not linked to stabbings in Oregon, Washington

Angela Palermo/apalermo@idahostatesman.com

This story was updated at 8:13 a.m. Nov. 27, 2022 to reflect the correct conclusion of the 1999 Pullman case.

Moscow police said in a short statement Friday night that the killings of four University of Idaho students do not appear to be tied to similar stabbings that occurred in Oregon and Washington.

In a news release, the Moscow Police Department said it has received “numerous media inquiries” about possible similarities between the Nov. 13 homicides and a 1999 double stabbing in Pullman, Washington, as well as a 2021 double stabbing in Salem, Oregon, where one person died.

“While these cases share similarities with the King Street homicides, there does not appear to be any evidence to support the cases are related,” police said.

All four victims in the Moscow case — U of I seniors Madison Mogen, 21, of Coeur d’Alene, and Kaylee Goncalves, 21, of Rathdrum; junior Xana Kernodle, 20, of Post Falls; and freshman Ethan Chapin, 20, of Mount Vernon, Washington — were stabbed to death.

Goncalves, Mogen and Kernodle lived in the King Street house where the homicides occurred, and Chapin was staying overnight with Kernodle. Two other roommates, who have been cleared of any involvement in the homicides, were sleeping at the residence at the time of the slayings but not harmed.

According to the Salem Statesman Journal, in the early morning hours of Aug. 13, 2021, Travis and Jamilyn Juetten were attacked by a masked intruder and each stabbed numerous times. Travis died in the attack, and Jamilyn survived with 19 stab wounds. No one has been arrested in connection with that attack.

A 1999 Moscow-Pullman Daily News article describes a knife attack on two Washington State University students as they slept. Both women survived. In 2000, the ex-husband of one of the victims was convicted of first- and second-degree assault.

Police keep homicide details to minimum

Officials offered a few other small details on the investigation in the news release. They said they’ve received more than 260 digital tips through the FBI’s online tip form for the case. Police also said they’ve collected 113 pieces of evidence that will be analyzed at the Idaho State Police crime lab.

The update comes days after police held a news conference addressing rumors that Goncalves had a stalker. Police said Wednesday they had looked “extensively” into those claims but did not say whether they were accurate.

Police have not identified any suspects and are keeping many details confidential, saying Wednesday that confidentiality is necessary to maintain the integrity of the investigation.

Anyone with information on the case can submit it via phone at 208-883-7180, via email at tipline@ci.moscow.id.us or online at fbi.gov/moscowidaho .