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Oskaloosa stabbing suspect arrested after authorities weed through rumors

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and Oskaloosa Police Department held a press conference Wednesday afternoon to discuss the homicide of Marquis Todd.

Wednesday morning, the Oskaloosa Police Department and Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation arrested 23-year-old Luke VanHemert of Oskaloosa.

VanHemert allegedly stabbed 22-year-old William Penn University student Marquis Todd on March 1 at the corner of 3rd and H Avenue.

DCI Special Agent in Charge Michael Motsinger says the incident happened shortly after Todd and VanHemert got into a traffic incident, which caused the driver of the car to return to the 600-block of North 3rd Street on three occasions.

“On the third occasion, they got involved with the other party, which resulted in a physical altercation, which obviously then led to the stabbing incident,” Motsinger said.

VanHemert was taken into custody at his place of work in Pella, Iowa, on Wednesday.


Motsinger says it took several weeks to charge VanHemert because a lot of false information was being spread over social media.

“All we ask the public for now is not misinformation, not spreading rumors, but if they actually have factual information, they actually witnessed the incident or were present there, to please come forward and cooperate with law enforcement.”

VanHemert is now being charged with one count of Second-Degree Murder. He is still in custody with a $500,000 cash-only bond.

The DCI, Oskaloosa Police Department, and Mahaska and Marion County Sheriff’s Office are still working together to investigate this incident.

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