Police matched DNA evidence from the scene where 4 Idaho students

HARRISBURG, PA (3TV/CBS 5/CNN) – Police have made an arrest in the murder of four college students in Idaho. They were stabbed to death while sleeping at an off-campus home six weeks ago. One of the victims had ties to Avondale.

Authorities arrested 28-year-old Bryan Christopher Kohberger in Pennyslvania on Friday. Kohberger is a criminal justice grad student at Washington State University. He lives in Pullman, just 15 minutes from the home where the students were murdered. Genetic genealogy helped investigators identify the suspect, a source with knowledge of the case told CNN. DNA found in Idaho was taken through a public database to find potential matches for family members, the source said. Once potential family matches were found, subsequent investigative work by law enforcement led to the identification of Kohberger, according to CNN’s source. Detectives are staying tight-lipped on any possible motive. One of the victims, Xana Kernodle, was from Avondale. Arizona’s Family tried talking to her father today, but he was unavailable.

“What I can tell you is that we do have a suspect in custody who committed these horrible crimes. And I do believe our community is safe,” said Moscow Police Chief James Fry. Nearly two months after a quadruple homicide rocked the country, a community on edge can begin getting justice. CNN reports police tracked a car leaving the scene to him later, making a DNA match. After that, Moscow police started cleaning up the house where the murders occurred, only to stop again. “House cleanup has been halted by an order from the court,” Fry said.

Kohberger reportedly asked state police when they brought him in if they made any other arrests. “I cannot confirm that, or I’m not sure, but that would be a part of our investigation,” said Fry.

An online post by Kohberger – now removed by Reddit – asked people to participate in a criminal justice study “to understand how emotions and psychological traits influence decision-making when committing a crime. In particular, this study seeks to understand the story behind your most recent criminal offense, with an emphasis on your thoughts and feelings throughout your experience.” Police say they will be able to answer more questions about the investigation and motive once Kohberger is extradited from Pennsylvania and appears in court in Idaho.

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