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January 28, 2023 6:27 pm

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Idaho college killings: Roommates of slain students break their silence


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(NewsNation) — It’s a quiet evening in Moscow weeks after the Nov. 13 killings of four college students in a rental home near the University of Idaho has stumped investigators and left a campus in fear for its safety.

The police say they won’t be putting out any more information unless it is completely vetted and won’t harm the ongoing investigation.

But that silence is deafening for the families of the four victims, who are desperate for any new development which could crack the case open.

Meanwhile, the two roommates who were also in the house at the time of the killings have broken their silence.

For the very first time, we are hearing from the two roommates who survived that deadly night exactly three weeks ago.

Bethany Funke and Dylan Mortensen wrote heartfelt statements about their friends which a youth pastor read publicly and shared with the world.

One of the surviving roommates, Mortensen wrote, “I know somewhere Xana and Ethan are together, keeping each other company, watching us and telling us, ‘It’s OK and that we have each other.’ Maddie and Kaylee, the inseparable duo, the two best friends that were like sisters.”

Funke said she wishes she could give each of her roommates “one last hug” and be able to tell them she “loved them.”

“You always told me that everything happens for a reason,” Funke wrote. “But I’m having a really hard time trying to understand the reason for this.”

Mortensen and Funke were sleeping on the first floor of their rental home when their three roommates, Kaylee Goncalves, 21; and Madison Mogen, 21; and Xana Kernodle, 20; Ethan Chapin, 20, were stabbed to death.

Over the weekend, investigators could be seen re-entering the crime scene.

Through the window, NewsNation reporters watched as they handled evidence markers.

Later, they left the home carrying large brown paper bags.

Detectives have sorted through nearly 3,000 tips and pored over 4,000 crime scene photos, trying to make sense of the information they have.

And still, there are no suspects and no persons of interest.

In an interview with Newsnation’s Brian Entin, the family of Goncalves says it feels as if the police rushed to clear names from their suspect list.

“I just feel like there were a couple of individuals who were cleared very fast that maybe should not have been,” Goncalves’ mother said.

The police on Saturday dispelled circulating rumors of potential suspects.

That includes the two surviving roommates, a man caught on camera close to the girls that night at a food truck, a ride-share driver and an ex-boyfriend.

The issue these victims’ families have is that the police have not shared the alibis of the people they’ve cleared as suspects.

So these families are left to wonder and speculate whether enough due diligence was put forward in this really quiet and secretive police work.

NewsNation has been covering this story from the beginning and will continue its investigation in a special hour on Sunday. National correspondent Brian Entin will host “Special Report: Idaho Murder Mystery” on Dec. 4 at 9 p.m. ET on NewsNation. Here’s how you can watch.