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Police remove vehicles from scene of quadruple student killing in Idaho

Chief James Fry (R) of the Moscow, Idaho, Police Department speaks to reporters about the ongoing investigation into the stabbing deaths of four University of Idaho students. Image Courtesy of University of Idaho/Youtube
Chief James Fry (R) of the Moscow, Idaho, Police Department speaks to reporters about the ongoing investigation into the stabbing deaths of four University of Idaho students. Image Courtesy of University of Idaho/Youtube

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- Police in Moscow, Idaho, have removed five vehicles from the area surrounding a residence at which four University of Idaho students were killed earlier this month.

Police responded to a 911 call Nov. 13 from a residence near the University of Idaho and discovered four bodies upon entering. Autopsies revealed that all four victims died of multiple stab wounds and were likely asleep when the attacks began.

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The victims were identified as Ethan Chapin, 20, Xana Kernodle, 20, Madison Mogen, 21, and Keylee Goncalves, 21.

"Today, as part of an ongoing homicide investigation and original search warrant, detectives relocated five vehicles from within the police perimeter to a more secure long-term storage location to continue processing evidence," the Moscow Police Department said in a press release Tuesday.

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The police have not named a suspect, but have stated that they are investigating hundreds of tips and struggling to control an atmosphere of paranoia as many University of Idaho students returned from Thanksgiving.

"There is speculation, without factual backing, stoking community fears and spreading false facts. We encourage referencing official releases for accurate information and updated progress," the press release said.

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Police have limited the details released to the public, but have stated they believe the incident was a "targeted attack."

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"To be honest, you're going to have to trust us on that at this point because we're not going to release why we think that," Moscow Police Capt. Roger Lanier said in response to a question from the media.

Police have said they do not believe the two surviving roommates at the residence were involved in a crime, nor do they believe the individual who called 911 is involved.

Investigators have said they have received reports that dead animals were found on the property, but determined that the cause was "wildlife activity and not related to the murders."

RELATED Police: 4 Univ. of Idaho slaying victims likely killed while sleeping

Police acknowledged reports that one of the victims had a stalker, but have not identified the person or been able to substantiate the claims. They also squashed speculation that the murders are linked to a a 1999 stabbing incident in Pullman, Wash.

The suspect remains unidentified and is presumed to be at large while police seek answers on a fixed-blade KA-BAR style military knife that is believed to be the murder weapon.

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