TikTok sleuths trying to solve the Idaho murders warned that it is 'extremely dangerous'

TikTok sleuths trying to solve the Idaho murders warned that it is 'extremely dangerous'
Father of Idaho murder victim says ‘means of death’ do not match

The Idaho murders have captivated the internet's attention and people on TikTok are determined to solve the gruesome case.

In mid-November four University of Idaho students, Ethan Chapin, Kaylee Goncalves, Xana Kernodle, and Madison Mogen, were brutally murdered while in an off-campus house.

Due to the nature of their deaths, the case immediately got national attention as people wondered who could have done this to four young students.

The hashtag #IdahoMurders immediately took off on TikTok where amateur detectives began sharing information hoping to solve the case.

Sign up for our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

The hashtag has received over 100 million views and certain creators are dedicating hours to piecing togethering new information about the murders.

But authorities are warning those trying to crack the case that it can be "extremely dangerous" to do so online.

"There is speculation, without factual backing, stoking community fears and spreading false facts," the City of Moscow warns about the homicides on their website.


#greenscreen UPDATE on Scene of Murder House 🗂️⚠️🚨 — #idahomurders #moscowmurders #universityofidaho #impettylondon #crimescene #idahostudentsmurdered #xanakernodle #maddiemogen #ethanchapin #kayleegoncalves

Like any homicide investigation, police are not releasing every piece of information associated with the case. Because of this, people online have jumped to conclusions while not having all the facts.

Patterns like that could be seen online when people tried to solve the case of Gabby Petito earlier this year.

Internet sleuths will call police department lines with theories, information, and accusations that they have no forensic evidence for after spending hours using facts found online.

Jeremey Reagan, a University of Idaho law student, told NBC News, "A lot of the time what people end up finding or reporting to police just jams up the investigation."

"It's a waste of time and resources," he added.

Regan was falsely accused of being involved with the students' deaths after giving an interview to the media where he looked nervous.

"The fact that I had a nervous smile on my face, people clung to that. 'Oh, he's smiling, he's proud of what he did,'" Reagan said.

"But I wasn't asking to be interviewed by a reporter. She literally stopped me while I was taking out the garbage, and I had nothing to hide, so I spoke with her."

Police later interviewed Reagan where he explained he was a victim of online accusations.

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

The Conversation (0)