The house where four University of Idaho students were assassinated last year is being demolished.
The trial of defendant Bryan Kohberger, which had been scheduled for October, had been postponed, as had the demolition of the house on King Road in Moscow, Idaho, which had been given to the school earlier this year.
Kohberger, 28, is now set to stand trial next summer for the stabbing deaths of Madison Mogen, Kaylee Goncalves, and Xana Kernodle and her boyfriend Ethan Chapin, all of whom were 21.
The university had indicated that teams from the prosecution and defense would have access to the six-bedroom house before it was demolished, and the FBI had collected more information from the house in October. Neither the prosecution nor the defense have spoken out against destruction.
According to the school, demolition was planned for the winter break, when there would be fewer kids in the vicinity.
“It is a grim reminder of the heinous act that took place there,” university president Scott Green said earlier this month in a statement. “While we appreciate the emotional connection some family members of the victims may have to this house, it is time for its removal and to allow the collective healing of our community to continue.”
Kaylee Goncalves’ family, who has fought the destruction, issued a statement earlier this month through their attorney Shanon Gray, stating the property had evidentiary and emotional value and should not be razed.
“The family has tirelessly stressed to the Prosecution and the University of Idaho the importance (evidentiary and emotionally) that the King Road house carries, but nobody seems to care enough,” the family stated in a statement obtained by local station KREM. It’s like yelling into the void. Nobody is listening, and everyone apologizes for the decision, but the families’ views aren’t important. Families of victims have a voice, and they should be heard and responded to!”
Ethan Chapin’s family, who did not dwell in the house, supported the demolition.
“We support the decision to demolish the King Street House — for the benefit of the University, its students (including our own children), and the Moscow community,” family members stated earlier this month in a statement.
In November 2022, the four students were discovered stabbed to death in their rental home. Two other housemates were not hurt. Kohberger, a criminology graduate student at nearby Washington State University, was apprehended the next month after a nationwide search. He has entered a not-guilty plea.
According to University spokeswoman Jodi Walker, depending on the weather, razing the house and clearing the site would take a few hours.
“That is an area that is dense with students, and many students have to look at it and live with it every day and have expressed to us how much it will help with the healing process to have that house removed,” she went on to say.