Blood-soaked Idaho crime scene where four students were brutally murdered is ‘a major challenge’ for cops searching for killer’s DNA, expert warns – as police investigate if one of the victims had a stalker
- The amount of blood at the scene will make it ‘difficult’ to find traces of the killer’s DNA, an expert has said
- Joseph Scott Morgan, a forensics professor at Jacksonville State University, said: ‘From a blood evidence standpoint, this is a profoundly bloody scene’
- His assessment comes as police revealed one of the victims of the quadruple murder in Moscow, Idaho, on November 13 may have had a stalker
- Bodies of Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Xana Kernodle, 20, and Ethan Chapin, 20, were found on second and third floors of house
- Police are expected to hold another press conference on Wednesday afternoon
Cops probing the horrific murders of four University of Idaho students face a ‘major challenge’ recovering samples of the killer’s DNA because of the amount of blood at the scene, a forensics expert has said.
Joseph Scott Morgan, a forensics professor at Jacksonville State University, said as the killer moved from victim to victim, there would be a ‘commingling of blood’ that makes it ‘difficult to distinguish individual samples’.
Police are yet to name a suspect in the murders of Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Xana Kernodle, 20, and Xana’s freshman boyfriend, Ethan Chapin, 20.
They were killed in the early hours of Sunday morning on November 13 in the house in Moscow, Idaho, which the girls shared with two other roommates.
Detectives also revealed on Tuesday that they’re looking at whether Goncalves had a stalker.
Moscow Police have received hundreds of tips and pieces of information but still haven’t uncovered an identity for the killer.
Morgan told Fox News: ‘From a blood evidence standpoint, this is a profoundly bloody scene.
Roommates Kaylee Goncalves, 21, (second left), Madison Mogen, 21, (on Kaylee’s shoulders), Ethan Chapin, 20, (second right) and Xana Kernodle, 20, (next to Ethan) were stabbed to death on Sunday November 13 between 3am and 4am
Blood still visible at the back of the house where four Idaho students where murdered as they slept in Moscow, Idaho
‘It’s going to be a very complicated case when you go through blood evidence, when you go to do DNA typing. It’s a major challenge.
‘If we believe this is a single killer with a single weapon, the killer is migrating from body to body, and you’ll have what’s called commingling of blood.
‘Here’s the rub. If this blood is all commingled, it’s difficult to distinguish the individual samples.’
Joseph Scott Morgan, a forensics professor at Jacksonville State University, said as the killer moved from victim to victim, there would be a ‘commingling of blood’ that makes it ‘difficult to distinguish individual samples’
Joseph Giacolone, a former NYPD detective and adjunct professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, said the killer may also have wounded themselves due to the severity of the attack.
‘If you’re stabbing and hit the bone, the knife kicks back, and your hand gets sliced,’ he said.
Police in Idaho have been contacting local businesses to ask whether they had recently sold a KA-BAR-style knife. Morgan said it would be surprising if such a knife was used, adding: ‘It’s a combat knife, single-edged, with a hilt. It’s a short blade, not as robust as other survival knives.’
The Moscow Police Department said on Tuesday it had received ‘hundreds of pieces of information’ that suggested one of the victims, Kaylee Goncalves, had a stalker.
Investigators have not been able to verify any of these tips.
Police believe the students were asleep when the killer launched the attacks between 3am and 4am. Each victim was stabbed multiple times and some had defensive wounds.
Two other roommates were inside the house and unhurt. Police were not called until around noon – and neither of the surviving roommates was the caller.
Xana Kernodle and her boyfriend Ethan Chapin (left) were both killed Sunday along with friends Madison Mogen and Kaylee Goncalves (right)
Ethan Chapin and Xana Kernodle. Kernodle lived at the house with the other two women who were killed, plus two more roommates. Chapin, Kernodle’s boyfriend, was staying at her home
A criminal profiler has also weighed in on the quadruple murder investigation, suggesting that the killer was ‘sloppy’ and likely a young man.
The ex-FBI agent said he believed the murderer either knew one or more of the residents or was stalking them.
The night before, on the evening of Saturday, November 12, Miss Mogen and Miss Goncalves had been at a local bar in Moscow, Idaho.
Chapin and Kernodle had been at a party at the Sigma Chi fraternity house on the University of Idaho campus.
Both parties returned home in the early hours of the morning. Chapin was not a permanent resident of the house but appeared to be staying at the residence that night.
The bodies of the four college students were later found on the second and third floors of the house.
Jim Clemente, a former FBI profiler and behavioral analysis expert hypothesized to Fox News Digital: ‘This is probably more of a compulsive kind of person, that would put him at a younger age and maybe in the age group or just above the victims.’
The ex-FBI supervisory special agent also called the killer ‘sloppy’ and not ‘particularly sophisticated, criminally sophisticated or forensically sophisticated’.
Adding to his theory, Clemente said: ‘He killed four different people this way. He didn’t just sort of blanch and run after the first one.’
Clemente also said he believed the killer’s ‘decision to commit such a brazen crime’ meant that he likely had a relationship with one or more of the victims.
The killer entered the home in the middle of the night with six people at the residence. Clemente said this made it a ‘high-risk crime,’ unless he knew one or more of the residents. This was likely not a random location, Clemente added.
‘Now, that could be because he has a relationship or a past relationship with one or more of them, or it could be that he’s been stalking one or more of them.’
He also said that entering the occupied home during the night meant that the killer knew the victims’ routines.
Clemente said he believed that this could not be random killings because the murderer is risking entering a home where an occupant could have a gun, or where multiple residents could confront him.
Jim Clemente, an ex-FBI agent, said he believed the murderer either knew one or more of the residents, or was stalking them
Moscow Police said on Tuesday that there had been much conversation about how to describe the weapon used and that the type used in the attacks is believed to be a fix-blade knife.
Police also said on Monday they would hold a news conference to update the public on the investigation on Wednesday afternoon.
On Sunday, law enforcement officers investigating the deaths asked for patience after a week passed with no arrests.
Police have said evidence leads them to believe the students were targeted, but have repeatedly declined to give details.
Anyone with information that could help detectives with the stalker tips are asked to contact Moscow police.
Tributes lay at the entrance to the University of Idaho where the four victims studied