Amid the ongoing investigation into the murder of four University of Idaho students, many have posed questions about the two surviving roommates who were asleep when the crime was committed.
According to the Moscow Police Department, on November 13, officers responded to a home near the university campus and discovered that four individuals were fatally stabbed. The individuals were identified as Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Ethan Chapin and Xana Kernodle. All the victims were students at the University of Idaho.
While no suspect has been identified in the crime, police previously ruled out the two surviving roommates who were inside the residence when the four others were killed. Police have not released the names of the other two roommates.
Newsweek recently spoke with former FBI profiler Mary Ellen O’Toole, who explained three possible scenarios for how the surviving roommates did not wake up while a suspect fatally stabbed four others.
“I’m at a disadvantage because I don’t know the specific scene but just going from other cases, this was a multilevel home and the bedroom of the two victims that survived seemed to be tucked away in the basement,” O’Toole told Newsweek.
According to police, the victims who were fatally stabbed were located on the second and third floors of the residence. O’Toole also added that outside mud or dirt surrounding the basement area of the home may have also “partially insulated what they would have or would not have heard.”
Some other Twitter users also mentioned the layout of the residence and how the surviving roommates were located on a lower level.
“Once you realize how the layout of the house is, it’s not that strange that they didn’t hear,” Twitter user Juliet AF wrote.
Once you realize how the layout of the house is, it’s not that strange that they didn’t hear
— Juliet AF (@ArtaxEffedMeUp) November 22, 2022
O’Toole also explained that wound pathology plays a big role in understanding if the surviving roommates heard what was going on at the time of the crime.
“We don’t know if those victims were stabbed in the throat. If you’re stabbed in the throat, you’re likely not going to be able to scream,” O’Toole said.
A third explanation for how the surviving roommates may not have heard the crime is based on a general public misconception that “when you’re attacked you’re going to naturally scream.”
“That’s not true,” O’Toole said. “Especially if you just came out of a sleep, you don’t know what’s going on, ‘Is this a dream, is somebody in the room, is somebody hitting me?’”
“You don’t necessarily scream. I think that’s more related to the movies, and so it’s possible some of these victims partially woke up but the other thing is they are dying, they are in the process of dying,” O’Toole explained. “Their ability to yell out for help is diminished by every infliction of another stabbing injury.”
Newsweek previously reached out to the Moscow Police Department for comment.
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