University of Idaho says it has consent to demolish home of 4 murdered students
Jul 7, 2023, 5:03 PM
(Angela Palermo/Idaho Statesman/Tribune News Service/Getty Images)
(CNN) — The University of Idaho said it does not know when it will demolish the home where four of its students were murdered but it does have consent from prosecution and defense attorneys to tear down the property.
“Our focus right now is on getting the personal items out and available to the families. We know these personal items are incredibly important in the healing process … We do not have a start date for demolition. There are also no plans for what may replace the house,” university spokesperson Jodi Walker told CNN Friday.
In emails to the university reviewed by CNN, Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson and quadruple murder suspect Bryan Kohberger’s defense attorney Anne Taylor both consented to the teardown of the house.
“The scene has been substantially altered from its condition at the time of the homicides including removal of relevant property and furnishings, removal of some structural items such as wallboard and flooring, and subjected to extensive chemical application creating a potential health hazard. These are some of the reasons that we have concluded that a ‘jury view’ would not be appropriate,” Thompson said.
The family of victim Kaylee Goncalves does not want the home to be destroyed until after Kohberger’s trial has concluded, their attorney Shannon Gray tells CNN.
CNN has reached out to and not heard back from other victims’ families.
Kohberger faces four counts of first-degree murder and one count of burglary in the November 2022 killings of students Goncalves, 21; Madison Mogen, 21; Xana Kernodle, 20; and Kernodle’s boyfriend Ethan Chapin, 20. A not guilty plea has been entered on his behalf.
Kohberger, a criminal justice student at nearby Washington State University, is accused of breaking into the home where the three women lived and where Chapin was staying overnight and stabbing them repeatedly before fleeing the scene.
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