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FBI renews call for public help in Kristin David murder case on 40th anniversary

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Kristin David
Posted at 2:08 PM, Jun 25, 2021

MOSCOW, Idaho — The FBI is renewing the call for help in the murder case of Kristin David on the 40 year anniversary of her death. On June 26, 1981, Kristin left her apartment in Moscow on her bike and was headed south on Highway 95 to Lewiston.

Kristin was 22-years-old at the time and was a senior at the University of Idaho, pursuing a double major in broadcast journalism and political science.

The FBI says it is committed to solving the murder of Kristin David. Advances in technology have allowed for new investigative leads and evidence items found on or near her body are being reviewed and retested.

The FBI and other law enforcement agencies, including the Lewiston Police Department, the Latah County Sheriff's Office and the Asotin County Sheriff's Office have pursued leads in the case. The FBI is asking anyone who previously gave information to law enforcement to do so again to make sure the information was properly recorded, investigated and retained.

Kristin was last seen alive on the highway outside Genessee, where she was approached by a man driving a brown man. Her remains were found a week later in the Snake River east of Clarkston, Washington.

Witnesses described the suspect as a white man, around 30-years-old, 5'10" and roughly 180 pounds, according to the FBI. He was described as being stocky or husky with a beard. His hair and beard were described as brown by one eye witness and red or "reddish" by another, but no other witnesses gave a specific hair or beard color. The suspect may have shaved his beard or otherwise changed his appearance after the crime.

The suspect drove a well-kept brown van with yellow license plates that had dark lettering. The FBI says it is not known if the suspect was the van's registered owner or whether the yellow plates belonged to the van. The van may have had a sliding side door on the passenger side, two swing-out rear doors with a window, and the van may have been customized.

The FBI believes there are still people from the community, whether they are still there or not, that have not come forward with information that could help solve the case. If anyone has information about the case or about those responsible, however insignificant or already known to police, to contact the FBI.

The investigation into Kristin's murder is still a joint investigation by the FBI Salt Lake City Field Office, the Asotin County Sheriff's Office and the Lewiston Police Department. Anyone with information can visit tips.fbi.gov or call (800) CALL-FBI.

The following remarks were provided by FBI Salt Lake City Supervisory Senior Resident Agent Zach Schoffstall at a press conference regarding the case:

Good afternoon. Thank you all for being here today. My name is Zach Schoffstall, and I’m the supervisory senior resident agent in the Coeur d’Alene office of the FBI Salt Lake City Division, which covers Idaho, Utah, and Montana. I’m pleased to be joined by our partner law enforcement agencies, including the Lewiston Police Department, Clarkston Police Department, Latah County Sheriff’s Office, Nez Perce County Sheriff’s Office, Asotin County Sheriff’s Office, the Idaho State Police, and the Nez Perce County Prosecutor’s Office. I am also honored to be joined by Anne Mackey.

Tomorrow, we solemnly mark the 40th anniversary of the disappearance and murder of Kristin David.

For 40 years, her family has grieved and today, we must all face the difficult reality that after so much time, the identity of Kristin’s killer is still unknown. This crime—that not only changed the lives of Kristin’s family, but also shattered the sense of safety and security in this close-knit community—remains unsolved.

Let me be clear: At this time, Kristin’s murder is not a cold case. It’s not going away, and we are dedicated more than ever to solving it.

But we need your help.

Today, we are renewing our call for the public’s assistance. We believe there are members of the community, whether they remain local or not, who haven’t yet come forward with information that could help solve this case. If you haven’t talked to law enforcement about what you know, please come forward now.

No tip is too small or insignificant.

We understand that some people with knowledge about the case may be hesitant to come forward. It could be because of close relationships with those who may be involved, as well as a concern for their reputation or standing in our community and amongst their friends. We recognize this and we know that relationships can change over time. Whatever the reason, it is not too late to call us.

In addition to relevant tips from the public, advancements in technology continuously allow us to develop new investigative leads and reexamine old ones. Methods for working these kinds of cases have also drastically improved over the years, allowing us to see this case through a new lens.

In 2018, our Resident Agency in Lewiston initiated a comprehensive review of the case, which included a full inventory of the physical evidence items remaining in FBI custody. Potentially key evidence items found on and near Kristin’s body continue to be reviewed and shipped out for renewed DNA testing as new technology becomes available. As you may have seen in recent media reports, advancements in fields such as forensic genealogy and DNA analysis have led to resolutions in many older cases, including those that have gone cold.

In addition, nearly four decades worth of documents and reports from the FBI’s case file have been reorganized. Records which had been maintained by local agencies were digitized and incorporated into that file. A detailed review of those case records remains ongoing. But already, it has sparked new investigative activity as we—and our local law enforcement partners—work diligently to follow up on old leads.

One of the challenges in working this decades-old case spanning multiple jurisdictions and involving numerous law enforcement agencies, is dealing with the possibility that crucial information received early in the investigation or over the years may have been inadvertently misfiled or lost.

And so, if you previously submitted information to law enforcement, we thank you. But we ask that you please do so again to make sure the information was properly recorded, investigated, and retained.

The public can contact us at tips.fbi.gov or by calling 1-800-CALL FBI. Again, that’s tips.fbi.gov or 1-800-CALL FBI.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge that Kristin’s case has long been associated with several other high-profile murdered and missing persons cases in the area during the same time frame. We are not ruling out the possibility Kristin’s murder is related to those murders, but we are investigating Kristin’s separately. That is all I will say about the other cases today.

In closing, I’d like to acknowledge all our partners here today for the efforts and dedication to this investigation.

We remain hopeful that we can still get justice for Kristin and answers for her family.

Many years ago, authorities received an anonymous letter that said, in part, “the soreness of losing someone like Kristin David lives forever.”

Kristin’s family will always feel the soreness of her loss. But there is still time to solve this case and provide them with answers. We know that with help from the public, it can be done.

Thank you.