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Campbellsville University student arrested in connection with death of fellow student in Kentucky

By Michelle Watson and Maria Sole Campinoti, CNN

(CNN) — A Campbellsville University student has been arrested in connection with the death of a fellow student in Kentucky, officials say.

The student, Josiah Malachi Kilman, 18, was found unresponsive in his room on campus early Saturday and later pronounced dead at a hospital, the university said in a statement. An official cause of death for Kilman has not been determined, according to the university.

On Saturday evening, police announced they arrested Charles E. Escalera, 21. On X, the university described Escalera as a student at the school.

“On Saturday, February 24, 2024, at approximately 5:15 PM Green County Sheriff’s Office and Kentucky State Police received a call of a suspicious male inside a barn located on the Green County, Taylor County line,” police said in an updated news release.

“Escalera was taken into custody by Kentucky State Police without incident. Escalera has been arrested and the arrest warrant will be served for Murder. He will be lodged in the Taylor County Detention Center,” according to the news release.

CNN has reached out to determine if Escalera has been assigned an attorney.

The university issued an all-clear for the campus, saying, “Charles Escalera has been arrested by police. As a result, the University is lifting the lockdown directive.”

In a Sunday news release, Campbellsville University president Joseph Hopkins described Kilman as “a beloved member of our community.”

“He was a bright light, and a person of incredible hope,” he said.

Hopkins said Kilman was from Montana and was a member of the university wrestling team.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to Josiah’s family, friends, and to all who had the privilege of knowing him,” the president said. “We stand together in prayer, offering our love and support during this time of mourning.”

CNN has reached out to Campbellsville police and the Kentucky State Medical Examiner’s Office for comment.

Campbellsville is about 85 miles southeast of Louisville.

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