MOSCOW, Idaho – The Moscow Police Department said Monday that a dog found skinned head-to-tail on Oct. 21 is unrelated to the brutal murders of four University of Idaho students three weeks later.
Pamela Colbert’s neighbors found her lost dog, a 12-year-old mini Australian shepherd, completely skinned just down the road from her home, which is several miles from the scene of the murders that occurred off-campus.
Colbert, 78, told Fox News Digital that she remembered at a Latah County Sheriff’s Office supervisor telling her: “This hasn’t been done by an animal. This was a human that did this.”
Some locals feared that the grotesque incidents could be related, but law enforcement dispelled those rumors on Monday.
“Detectives are aware of a Latah County Sheriff’s Office incident of the report of a skinned dog and have determined it is unrelated to this incident,” the Moscow Police Department said in a short update on Monday evening.
Her neighbor, Clint Hughes, has a fluffy Bernese Mountain Dog named Max, who ripped up his bed the same day Colbert’s dog was found dead near both of their properties in an area near a shed with overgrown grass.
“You could tell it just wasn’t an animal that did it,” he explained, adding that “it was obviously done with a knife.”
Moscow’s last homicide was in 2015. The entire community is on edge a week since police do not have any suspects nor a recovered weapon more than a week after the tragedy.
The FBI, Idaho State Police, and Moscow Police Department are investigating the murders of Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Ethan Chapin, 20, and Xana Kernodle, 20, on Nov. 13, just blocks from the campus of the University of Idaho.
The four students returned to their home around 1:45 a.m. and were murdered some time between 3:00 and 4:00 a.m., according to police.
Someone called 911 from one of the two surviving roommates’ phones shortly before noon to report an unconscious person. Police then located the victims and issued an alert to University of Idaho students.
Investigators expanded the crime scene on Monday to include a parking lot and forested area behind the home.
The Moscow Police Department also said that a separate dog was found at the home on the day of the murders and was given to a “responsible party.”
Authorities are asking anyone with information about the incident to call 208-883-7180 or [email protected]