Thursday, December 14, 2000

Body of missing student found

Discovery made in trailer owned by co-worker

The Associated Press

        RAY, Ohio — A body found in a trailer in this southern Ohio town is that of 20-year-old Emily Murray, a Kenyon College student missing since early November, the Vinton County prosecutor's office said Wednesday.

        The identification was confirmed using dental records, said Johnna Rose, legal assistant to the Vinton County prosecutor.

        An unrelated court case and an out-of-state license plate led authorities to Ms. Murray's body Saturday in a trailer owned by a man who worked with her.

        Gregory McKnight, 24, and his wife, Kathryn, 35, are charged with receiving stolen property. Ms. Murray's car was parked outside the trailer. Both are in the Pickaway County Jail on $1 million bond. Gregory McKnight is on suicide watch, Ms. Rose said.

        Preliminary autopsy reports show Ms. Murray was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head.

        Neither of the McKnights has been charged in connection with Ms. Murray's death, but they are the only suspects, Knox County Sheriff David Barber said.

        Ms. Murray was last seen Nov. 3 after working her last scheduled shift at the Pirate's Cove pizza restaurant in Gambier, which is walking distance from the Kenyon campus. Gregory McKnight is the kitchen manager at the restaurant.

        In 1992, Gregory McKnight, then a resident of the New York City borough of Queens, was sentenced to the Circleville Youth Center at age 15 for robbing and killing a Columbus man.

        He was released from the center in 1997 at age 21, said Kevin Miller, spokesman for the Ohio Department of Youth Services.

        Kathryn McKnight worked as a corrections officer at the center. She has been on disability leave for more than a year, Mr. Miller said. She was disciplined in 1997 for inappropriate communication with an unidentified youth at the center.

        There was no sign of struggle at the restaurant, where Ms. Murray's car was parked, leading investigators to believe that wherever she was going, she went voluntarily, Sheriff Barber said.

        A sheriff's deputy saw Ms. Murray's dark green Subaru when he went to the McKnights' unoc cupied trailer Saturday to serve Gregory McKnight a summons. He had been indicted on charges of receiving stolen property and complicity to commit burglary in an unrelated case.

        The deputy ran the Subaru's plate number, which was listed on her missing persons report in Knox County.

        After getting a warrant, officers went into the trailer and found the body rolled up in a carpet. Vinton County Prosecutor Timothy Gleeson said a bullet casing also was recovered, which may help them track the weapon used to kill Ms. Murray.

        A junior at Kenyon, Ms. Murray was a graduate of Shaker Heights High School in suburban Cleveland. Her parents now live in Cold Spring, N.Y., north of New York City.


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