Morgan State University's president broke his silence Thursday on the high-profile case of a student who told authorities he killed a family friend and then ate some of the man's organs.
President David Wilson had declined to grant an interview, hold a news conference or issue a statement about the case of Morgan student Alex Kinyua, but he spoke publicly Thursday at a meeting of Morgan's board of regents.
Kinyua, a 21-year-old electrical engineering student set to begin his senior year in the fall, told authorities that he ate the heart and brain of a man he is charged with killing last month at his family's Joppatowne home. The slaying came days after Kinyua was charged in an on-campus baseball bat attack and months after his removal from the school's ROTC program for an outburst in a computer lab.
Wilson said he could not address specifics of the case, but he wanted to assure students, parents, faculty, staff, alumni and all of the university's supporters that “the safety and well-being of our campus community continues to be a top priority.”
“We will continue here at Morgan to gather facts and we will update the community as appropriate,” Wilson said.
Kinyua, a U.S. citizen originally from Kenya whose father is a Morgan physics professor, admitted using a knife to kill and carve up 37-year-old Kujoe Bonsafo Agyei-Kodie before eating his organs, the Harford County Sheriff's Office said when they arrested him May 30. The older man, a native of Ghana, had been staying with the Kinyua family for about six weeks at their townhouse when he disappeared May 25. His body was found four days later. Investigators haven't given a possible motive.
On May 19, Kinyua attacked a former Morgan student with a bat covered in chains, according to charging documents. An attorney for the victim said his client lost consciousness and was dragged to a back room of the apartment, where other residents interrupted Kinyua standing over the victim holding a knife. Campus police charged Kinyua with assault and reckless endangerment, but he was released on $220,000 bail days later.
The victim's attorney is exploring if there were other signs that Kinyua was a danger and whether the university could have done more to protect the university community with an eye toward a lawsuit.
Former Maryland congressman and board of regents member Kweise Mfume said he didn't have anything to add to Wilson's statement.
Board member Martin Resnick said that it wouldn't be proper for regents to discuss the matter and that it would be better for the school to have one voice.
“We're not trying to hide anything,” he said. “We'll know the facts when we know them.”