Idaho murder investigators may identify knife but never find it: forensic expert
The knife used in the Idaho student murders may have left evidence that investigators could use to link it to the killer, though the knife was never found, a forensic expert said.
In the early hours of Nov. 13, University of Idaho students Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle, and her boyfriend, Ethan Chapin, were stabbed to death, allegedly by college student Bryan Kohberger. of the state of Washington. An empty tan leather knife scabbard was found next to the bodies of two of the slain students, and police said the murder weapon was a fixed-blade knife.
While the knife itself is still missing, forensic expert Joseph Scott Morgan described Thursday in “Dr. Phil” how the gun could still be identified and linked to the killer.
“We don’t need to have the knife right now because the knife might leave more evidence,” Morgan explained.
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He said the full-body X-ray taken during the autopsy may reveal a metal chip from the blade that can then be analyzed.
“So this knife would have been used several times – four times, okay? Let’s think about it. The structural integrity of this thing is starting to deteriorate,” Morgan said. “It’s going to flake off. Sometimes points break off. I’ve seen this a number of times on autopsy. If so, they very well found a metal fragment of the blade of this knife in the body.
He then explained how metallurgical analysis can be used to trace the knife back to its specific maker, which can then help researchers determine where the knife was sold and who bought it.
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‘The fact that the scabbard was found there does not mean that the knife was transported. So you’re also looking for a specific forensic link to the chemical structure of the blade. It could potentially be here in this case,” Morgan noted.
Attorney-at-law Mercedes Colwin speculated that the knife scabbard may have been left at the crime scene on purpose.
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“It could be, I mean, it’s almost like — and we’ve seen that with other killers it’s their calling card, ‘I get it,'” she said. “Especially if you think you’re smarter than everyone else, and he sure—he had gloves on, or so it’s believed, he had gloves on. He tried to cover up, did something to get rid of the clothes, if he is indeed the killer then of course that’s something that could have been a calling card and left it there.
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