Authorities in Washington state have arrested a man on first-degree murder and kidnapping charges in connection with a local couple’s disappearance last week. The suspect, who was not named, was identified as a man in his 40s from Olympia, the same Pacific northwest city wherelived, although no other details about him were released as of Monday morning.
Davido and Karen A. Koep were determined to be missing on Nov. 13, after deputies with the Thurston County sheriff’s office performed a welfare check at their residence. The welfare check came in response to a report that one of the Koeps had not shown up for work, the office said in a news release issued the following day. At the time, authorities described the circumstances surrounding their disappearance as “suspicious.”
The married couple’s car was initially missing from their home in the Lake Forest Development in Thurston County, but law enforcement found it later in Olympia. Detectives with the sheriff’s office opened an investigation into their disappearance alongside local, state and federal partners, and said in another news release issued Saturday that the couple was attacked at their residence and likely did not survive.
“Working with our local, state, and federal partners, we have gathered evidence to identify a suspect in their disappearance,” wrote Thurston County Sheriff Derek Sanders in the latest release. “Throughout the investigation, we have been in contact with the family of the missing couple, and sadly, we do not believe the couple survived the attack at their residence.”
The couple knew the suspect, according to the sheriff’s office, which said he would be booked into the Thurston County Jail on two counts of first-degree murder and first-degree kidnapping. Authorties did not reveal any details anout how the suspect and victims knew each oher.
Authorities described Davido as a 6-foot-tall white man weighing around 180 pounds, and described Karen Koep as a 5-foot 4-inch white woman weighing 115 pounds. Images of the couple have been shared and circulated by the sheriff’s office.
People who knew the couple gathered on Sunday for a prayer vigil outside of Karen Koep’s chiropractic office, CBS affiliate KIRO-TV reported. Sharon Cannizzo, Davido’s sister, told the news station that the couple “adored their children,” adding, “Their family was very, very important to them.”
“It’s just unfathomable really that anyone would harm any of them. It’s just so hard for me to believe,” said Lucas Anderson, a friend of Karen Koep, in comments to KIRO-TV.
Anyone with information potentially related to the case has been asked to contact the sheriff’s office in Thurston County.