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Kentucky college student's cause of death released, wrestling teammate charged with murder: Police

A suspect has been arrested in connection to the death of a Kentucky student who was found dead in his dorm room over the weekend at Campbellsville University, according to police.

Josiah Kilman, 18, was discovered unresponsive in his Campbellsville dorm room around 1 a.m. local time Saturday morning and was transported to Taylor Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, the university said in a press release.

Kilman's body was transported to the Kentucky State Medical Examiner's Office in Louisville for an autopsy where the cause of death was determined to be asphyxia via manual strangulation, authorities announced in a press release Monday.

On Saturday evening, the Green County Sheriff's Office and Kentucky State Police announced that 21-year-old Charles Escalera was arrested at approximately 5:15 p.m. in connection with Kilman's death, officials said.

Escalera has been arrested and charged with Kilman's murder, officials said in Monday's update, noting, "a motive for the crime is still undetermined at this time."

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Authorities were dispatched on Saturday after receiving a call for a "suspicious male located inside a barn" on the Green County and Taylor County line, according to a police update posted to Facebook.

Police said Escalera was taken into custody without incident.

Both Escalera and Kilman were members of the wrestling team at Campbellsville University, a spokesperson for the college confirmed to ABC News on Sunday.

PHOTO: Campbellsville University student Josiah Kilman was found unresponsive on Saturday, Feb. 24 in his dorm room. (Brandon Lopez)
PHOTO: Campbellsville University student Josiah Kilman was found unresponsive on Saturday, Feb. 24 in his dorm room. (Brandon Lopez)

Escalera is facing murder and burglary charges and is being held in the Taylor County Detention Center, according to online records. He does not yet have an attorney listed.

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"Campbellsville University is grieving the loss of one of our family. We have lost a student and our hearts are broken," Dr. Joseph Hopkins, Campbellsville University president, said in a statement.

"During this devastating time, the continued safety of our students and the residents of our community are our primary concern. With consultation from local law enforcement, we will continue to implement every measure necessary to protect and support students and our community," Hopkins said.

PHOTO: 21-year-old Charles Escalera was arrested and booked on murder and burglary charges on Saturday, Feb. 24 at the Taylor County Detention Center. (Taylor County Detention Center)
PHOTO: 21-year-old Charles Escalera was arrested and booked on murder and burglary charges on Saturday, Feb. 24 at the Taylor County Detention Center. (Taylor County Detention Center)

Campbellsville University announced early Sunday that all scheduled classes, events and activities on campus will resume.

Campbellsville is a private Christian university that's about 84 miles southeast of Louisville and approximately 83 miles southwest of Lexington.

MORE: Suspect charged with murder after woman who went on run found dead on University of Georgia campus

Kilman's death in Kentucky is at least the third death of a college student reported this month in the United States.

In Georgia, a 22-year-old woman was found dead last week after going for a run on the University of Georgia's Athens campus. The victim, Laken Hope Riley, was found Thursday in a wooded area on campus with "visible injuries," the university said. She died from blunt force trauma, according to University of Georgia Police Department Chief Jeffrey Clark.

A suspect in her death, 26-year-old Jose Antonio Ibarra, has been charged with malice murder, felony murder, aggravated battery, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, kidnapping, obstructing an emergency call and concealing the death of another, according to police.

MORE: Suspect in University of Colorado dorm murders allegedly threatened to kill roommate over taking out trash: Court documents

Tragedy also struck the University of Colorado - Colorado Springs campus earlier this month when a student allegedly gunned down two people in the dorms, including his roommate.

Nicholas Jordan, 25, was arrested on Monday and charged with two counts of first-degree murder for the deaths of his roommate, Samuel Knopp, and Celie Rain Montgomery, who were found dead on Feb. 16, according to Colorado Springs police.

Jordan had allegedly told Knopp weeks prior that he'd "kill him" if he was asked to take out the trash again, according to court documents. Jordan allegedly had an AK-47-style assault rifle and a handgun in his car when he was arrested, according to prosecutors.

ABC News' Meredith Deliso, Jeffrey Cook and Emily Shapiro contributed to this report.

Kentucky college student's cause of death released, wrestling teammate charged with murder: Police originally appeared on abcnews.go.com