Arrest in University of Idaho murders

An arrest was announced today in the murders of four University of Idaho students.

The suspect was in a PhD program in criminology at The University of Washington State’s Pullman campus, just 15 minutes from where the bodies were found in the students’ shared house last month.

He was conducting an online study of decision-making by criminals. Now it seems he will be able to conduct an up-close and intense study of death penalty jurisprudence in Idaho. It might take a little longer than his PhD dissertation, but he’ll get there.

12 thoughts on “Arrest in University of Idaho murders”

  1. In the Social Sciences, we call that kind of research he’ll be doing from now on (assuming he is indeed guilty): ‘participant observation.’ I wouldn’t be surprised at all if it earned him a Ph.D., a book contract, a podcast, and even a starring role in a Netflix documentary.
    I am being cynical…..but only a little 🫤

    1. Yeah, Netflix for all of its “going forward we are going to focus on more positive stories” sure likes the point of view of killers in their movie offerings. I guess that’s because their audience likes it.

      1. Thank you, Mary! I need to consult with a friend of mine who does a lot of genetic genealogy in the adoption setting and then post about the importance of considering loading a DNA test result to GEDmatch.

        1. I find it fascinating. And I really appreciate the rigor required to put all the bits and bobs together to create a profile. I hope 2023 sees the same thing done in the OCCK case. Best wishes for the New Year!

    1. They don’t hang, but Idaho is most certainly a death penalty state, having reinstated that punishment in 1973 after a 1972 USSCt case struck down death penalty statutes across the nation. The method is lethal injection, but the state has had difficulty obtaining the right drugs to carry it out. From 1982 to 2009, an inmate could choose firing squad or lethal injection, but no one chose the bullet method and the sole method was changed by statute to lethal injection. Previously the judge in a case determined life or death in the sentencing phase and the USSCt said it must be determined by a jury. In that state a juror must be prepared to consider a penalty of death in a case like this. Whoever committed these four murders ticks off more than a few of the aggravating circumstances warranting execution:

  2. “Now it seems he will be able to conduct an up-close and intense study of death penalty jurisprudence in Idaho.”

    This is an excellent point.

  3. His family probably will or has hired one of the handful of heavy-hitter criminal defense attorneys in Boise, who depending on the evidence, will guide him through a guilty plea and sentencing or a trial. No matter the defendant, this is a death penalty case and a guilty verdict and death sentence would result in years and years of appeals during a stay on death row. Plenty of time for study.

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