Idaho murder suspect plans to waive extradition hearing

Idaho murder suspect plans to waive extradition hearing
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BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The suspect arrested in connection with the slayings of four University of Idaho students plans to waive an extradition hearing so his defense attorney can be brought to Idaho to face murder charges Saturday.

Bryan Kohberger, a 28-year-old Ph.D. A student and teaching assistant in Washington State University’s Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology was taken into custody by Pennsylvania State Police at her parents’ home in Chestnuthill Township early Friday morning.

“We believe we have our man,” Moscow Police Department Capt. Anthony Dahlinger told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Investigators obtained Kohberger’s DNA samples directly from the suspect after his arrest, Dahlinger said.

“He is the person we believe is responsible for all four murders,” he said.

Latah County, Idaho, District Attorney Bill Thompson said at a news conference Friday that investigators believe Kohberger entered the University of Idaho students’ home near the campus “with the intent to commit murder.” The bodies of the students – Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Khana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin – were found in November. 13, several hours later, investigators believe they are dead.

The arrest in the disturbing case brought a sense of relief to the small north Idaho college campus after weeks with little information provided by police. But that has raised questions about whether the suspect knew the victims, what he did in the weeks after the murders and how authorities tracked him to Pennsylvania.

Dahlinger said many of those details will be revealed after Kohberger’s first appearance in an Idaho courtroom. State law prohibits police from releasing most investigative records while an investigation is ongoing, and investigators have withheld many details about the investigation to avoid damaging the case.

“I really hope that everyone out there can understand the ‘why’ behind us keeping so much information close to our vest,” Dahlinger said. “This is the positive result we have been looking for all along.”

Kohberger’s attorney, Chief Public Defender Jason LaBar, said Kohberger is eager to be exonerated and plans to tell a judge in Monroe County, Pennsylvania on Tuesday that he will waive an extradition hearing.

LaBar also cautioned people not to make judgments about the case until they get a fair trial. The case has sparked much speculation on social media, with would-be detectives suggesting possible motives and often trying to blame the deaths on various friends and acquaintances of the victims.

“Mr. Kohberger is accused of very serious crimes, but the American justice system gives him a veneer of innocence,” LaBar wrote in a prepared statement. “He must be presumed innocent until proven guilty in the court of public opinion.”

Dahlinger said police are now trying to understand “every aspect” of Kohberger. After the arrest was announced, investigators asked anyone who recognizes Kohberger to call the hotline to share information.

The answer was immediate.

“We got 400 phone calls in the first hour after the press conference, which is great,” Dahlinger said. “We’re trying to build this picture of him now: Who he is, his history, how we got to this event, why this event happened.”

Neighbors of the Kohberger family in Chestnuthill, Pennsylvania, told The (Scranton) Times-Tribune on Friday that they were shocked to see law enforcement outside the home.

Eileen Cesaretti, who lives across the street, said she loves Kohberger’s parents and her son, who she said helps her and her husband around their house when he comes home from school.

“I don’t think he can do that. I pray to God that he is innocent,” Cesaretti said.

Nephi Duff lives next door to Bryan Kohberger in Washington State University’s graduate and family housing complex. He told Spokane, Washington-based television station KREM2 that recent crimes, such as those in Moscow, have made him feel safe.

“I don’t remember ever seeing him,” Duff said of Kohberger. “I thought I had moved to a safe, small community, but not recently. I just think, if these things are happening right under my nose, how can I protect (my family)?”

WSU Criminal Justice and Criminology student BK Norton said Friday that they don’t know Kohberger well, but they don’t like him.

“We interacted in class, but personally I wasn’t a fan of Bryan because of the comments he made about LGBTQ+ people,” they said. “He was a bit out there, but I always thought it was because he was awkward and wanted to fit in.”

Federal and state investigators, who could not publicly discuss details of the ongoing investigation and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, are looking into Kohberger’s background, financial records and electronic communications as they work to establish a motive and build the case. from anonymity. Investigators are also interviewing people who knew Kohberger, including those at WSU, the official said.

Kohberger is being held without bail in Pennsylvania and will be held without bail in Idaho after his extradition, Latah County District Attorney Thompson said. Thompson said testimony on the four first-degree murder charges in Idaho will remain sealed until it is returned. He is also charged with theft in Idaho. An extradition hearing is set for Tuesday.

Students — Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Rathdrum, Idaho; Madison Mogen, 21, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; Khana Kernodle, 20, Post Falls, Idaho; and Ethan Chapin, 20, of Conway, Wash., were members of the university’s Greek system and close friends. Mogen, Goncalves and Kernodle lived in a three-story rented house with two other roommates. Kernodle and Chapin were dating and he was visiting the house that night.

Autopsies are shown All four of them were probably asleep when they were attacked. Some had defensive wounds and each had been stabbed multiple times. Police said there were no signs of sexual assault.

Ben Roberts, a graduate student in WSU’s criminology and criminal justice department, described Kohberger as confident and outgoing, but said it seemed like “she’s always looking for a way to fit in.”

“To be honest, I thought he was very awkward.” Roberts said.

Roberts started the program in August — along with Kohberger, he said — and took several courses with her. I described Kohberger as wanting to appear academic.

“One thing he would always do was find the most complicated way to explain something by doing almost nothing,” he said.

Dahlinger said the arrest was a bittersweet moment for law enforcement officials.

“We are very excited to be able to locate Mr. Pavel. Kohberger and take him into custody, but we all still feel sadness and regret,” he said. “We feel terrible for the families and the loss of loved ones.”


Levy reported from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Balsamo reported from Washington. News Researcher Rhonda Shafner in New York; In Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, reporters Mark Scolforo and Brooke Schultz; Michael Kunzelman in Silver Spring, Maryland; and Martha Bellisle in Seattle also contributed.

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