The two surviving roommates who were at home when four University of Idaho students were stabbed to death in November have spoken out for the first time.
In a letter read by a pastor at a church vigil Friday, Dylan Mortensen and Bethany Funke wrote that their friends were “all one of a kind,” CBS News reported.
“They all lit up any room they walked into and were gifts to this world,” one of the roommates said in the letter. “I wish every day that I could give them all one last hug and say how much I loved them.”
Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Xana Kernodle, 20, and Ethan Chapin, 20, were stabbed to death in the early hours of Nov. 13 in the girls’ off-campus house near the University of Idaho in Moscow. Chapin was not a resident of the house, but he was dating Kernodle and had been staying the night.
“To Xana and Ethan: they were the perfect pair together and had this unstoppable relationship,” Mortensen wrote. She also called Mogen and Goncalves, who were best friends, “the inseparable duo.”
“My life was greatly impacted to have known these four beautiful people, by people who changed my life in so many ways and made me so happy,” Mortensen wrote.
The killings took place around 3 or 4 a.m., police said. The two surviving roommates were on the first floor of the house when the stabbing took place on the second and third floors. Mortensen and Funke likely slept through the attacks. One of their cellphones was used to call 911 to report an “unconscious” person when they woke up later that morning, police have said. Police ruled out the surviving roommates as suspects.
The motive and identity of the killer are still unknown as the investigation enters its fourth week. The weapon, believed to have been a large fixed-blade knife, has not been found.
The Moscow Police Department asked the neighborhood for any surveillance footage that could help with the investigation. Several people who were seen with the victims that night have been cleared, including a private driver who drove two of them home.
Authorities continue to describe the incident as a targeted attack, NBC reported, even though Moscow police and the Latah County district attorney appeared last week to walk back their initial assessment that the victims were targeted. Police say they don’t know if the target was the residence or its occupants.
Steve Goncalves, the father of Kaylee Goncalves, spoke out last week to express his frustration with the lack of progress in the investigation, saying that his daughter may have had a stalker who made her uncomfortable. Alivea Goncalves, Kaylee’s sister, said during a NewsNation interview about the investigation that the family has been given little information from law enforcement.