(NationalUSNews.com) — The house where four Idaho college students died during the infamous Idaho college murders of 2023 has been demolished, much to the dissatisfaction of the victim’s families. According to an official from the University of Idaho, the demolition is a step toward closure for the school. Victims’ families disagree, claiming the house had emotional value to them due to its connection with their family members’ deaths. Family members also claim the house could have answered questions tied to the investigation and provided more insight into the murders.
Authorities found four dead University of Idaho students in the house in November of last year. According to prosecutors, University of Washington student Bryan Kohberger broke into the home and stabbed the victims to death. Kohberger’s car, a Hyundai Elantra, was spotted in the area during the time of the murders. Authorities began an extensive search for the Hyundai Elantra, centered on Kohberger, after he obtained a new license plate for his car.
An officer for Kohberger’s college spotted the Elantra and reported it to authorities. After receiving the report and multiple tips indicating Kohberger’s presence in the area, authorities detained the University of Washington student to conduct an investigation. Police performed DNA testing on Kohberger, which matched DNA found at the Idaho house. Eyewitness testimony from a surviving resident of the house matched Kohberger’s description, making him a prime suspect in the murder case. Authorities also searched phone records, which indicate Kohberger’s presence in the area during the murders and weeks before the crime.
Despite the house being a crime scene, neither Kohberger’s defense attorneys nor the prosecution opposed its demolition. The owner of the house donated it to the university after the murders, with the school initially planning to demolish it in July 2023. The courts postponed the demolition until the winter so that Kohberger’s defense attorneys could access the home and prepare for his murder trial. Kohberger currently faces four first-degree murder charges, which he failed to enter a plea for. The court entered a not-guilty plea on Kohberger’s behalf.
Kohberger’s trial will begin in the summer but could face additional delays depending on developments in Kohberger’s case. Despite the developing legal case, the University of Idaho’s president claims the campus had to push forward with the planned demolition. University of Idaho President Scott Green claims he understands the emotional connection to the house by the victims’ families, but the house’s demolition moved forward so that the community could heal from the heinous murders.
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