Campbellsville University student found dead in dorm room, another student arrested

By mzaxazm

A student was found dead in his Campbellsville University dorm room early Saturday morning, and another student was arrested in connection with the killing, officials said.

Campbellsville police identified the deceased student as Josiah Malachi Kilman, 18.

Charles E. Escalara, 21, was arrested on a charge of murder after he was found in a barn, police said Saturday evening. After the arrest, a lockdown at the university was lifted.

Escalara is a student at Campbellsville University, the school said on X.

Kilman was found unresponsive in his dorm room at the university in Campbellsville, Kentucky, at approximately 12:43 a.m. Saturday, police said.

He was taken to Taylor Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

A cause of death has not been determined. Kilman’s body was transferred to the Kentucky State Medical Examiner’s Office in Louisville, where an autopsy will be performed, police said.

“Campbellsville University is grieving the loss of one of our family,” university President Joseph Hopkins said in a statement. “We have lost a student and our hearts are broken. During this devastating time, the continued safety of our students and the residents of our community are our primary concern.”

Malte Akmam, a student at Campbellsville University, said it was quiet on campus Saturday in the wake of Kilman’s death.

“I think everyone is shocked from what happened yesterday,” he told NBC affiliate WLEX of Lexington, Kentucky. “It’s kind of hard to grab what really happened but we’re trying to stay safe now and just take care of each other.”

Before the arrest, the university said in a statement that though police had determined there was no continued threat to students, it advised students and people living near campus to “heighten precautions.”

“Secure your residences, secure vehicles, and increase awareness of your surroundings,” the statement said.

Counselors were available for “students seeking emotional support during this tragedy,” the university statement said. The Ransdell Chapel is also open for students and staff “for prayer and support of one another.”

Campbellsville, a private Christian university, is located 85 miles south of Louisville.

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