Drugs May Have Been Issue In West Valley Triple Murder

YAKIMA -- The West Valley community was shaken by three murders last month. Now they have some relief. Kevin Harper, 28, is in jail accused of beating three people to death. Action News found, it may have all started with an attempt to steal money for drugs.

The Sheriff announced a warrant was issued for the arrest of Kevin Harper, for the murders of William, Pauline and Elizabeth Goggin.

Harper made his first court appearance crying as he walked in. A couple hours before his arraignment, investigators and prosecutors laid out the case against Harper. Those living in the Falcon Ridge neighborhood where the triple murder occurred expected the killer knew the three victims. Detectives said, he did not, and that the Goggins were chosen at random.

Detectives also said it was likely a stoned Kevin Harper was in search of cash to buy his next hit of Methamphetamine. So, with cameras at a coded gate, how did he get in?

"There still is some speculation about this, but the suspect lives close enough by that he could have walked," said Stew Graham the head detective with the Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies were actually sent to Harper’s trailer home early Saturday morning on a domestic violence call. Harper was arrested and two weapons were taken from the home. One belonged to the Goggins. A search warrant on Monday turned up even more personal belongings from the victims' home.

"There were some items that belonged to Pauline, and those items there had been an attempt to destroy those," said Graham.

Additionally, investigators say five items that can be specifically linked to the Goggins were found in the trailer. After that, it was all detectives needed to get a warrant and make an arrest.

Detectives are not ready to talk about a murder weapon, other than to say the killings were brutal. Each victim died from multiple blows to the head.

Kevin Harper will be back in court again in two weeks. So far, bond was denied. His trial date was set for next month.