University of Idaho homicide suspect may be extradited Tuesday


University of Idaho homicides

Four U of I students were found dead in a house off campus on Nov. 13. Follow our coverage here.

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The recently arrested suspect in the Moscow quadruple homicide has been sitting in a jail more than 2,500 miles from where the University of Idaho students were killed on Nov. 13.

But that could change as early as Tuesday night, according to his lawyer in Pennsylvania.

Bryan Kohberger, a 28-year-old graduate student studying criminology at Washington State University, was arrested by the Pennsylvania State Police at about 1:45 am Friday at a home in Chestnuthill Township. A prosecutor told The New York Times it was the home of Kohberger’s parents.

Police placed him in the Monroe County Correctional Facility, and an extradition hearing is planned for Tuesday at 1:30 pm Mountain time.

Jason LaBar, the chief public defender in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, and the attorney representing Kohberger there, told the Idaho Statesman on Saturday that Kohberger is “eager to be exonerated” and plans to waive his extradition rights during the hearing.

Under Pennsylvania law, defendants have a right to a separate hearing to determine whether there are legal grounds for extradition.

It was an “easy decision” to waive the hearing since it would be easy for the state to argue that it had the right to extradite Kohberger, LaBar told CNN.

“It’s a procedural issue, and really all the commonwealth here has to prove is that he resembles or is the person who the arrest warrant was out for and that he was in the area at the time of the crime,” LaBar told CNN.

Kohberger faces four first-degree murder charges in Idaho, according to Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson, in the fatal stabbings of Madison Mogen, 21, of Coeur d’Alene, and Kaylee Goncalves, 21, of Rathdrum; junior Xana Kernodle, 20, of Post Falls; and freshman Ethan Chapin, 20, of Mount Vernon, Washington.

Kohberger also faces a felony burglary charge for entering their King Road home just off the Moscow campus on Nov. 13 with the intent to commit murder, Thompson said at a news conference last Friday.

LaBar told idaho-by-tuesday-night/277-48c4eed9-1bbb-412b-9b5d-582485bfdca2″>NBC News that he anticipated Kohberger to be taken to Idaho either Tuesday night or Wednesday after the extradition waiver was submitted.

The Moscow Police Department gave a less definite answer as to when Kohberger would be in the state. Law enforcement agencies are legally allowed up to 10 days to complete an extradition.

“We do not have a timeline at this point,” Moscow Police Capt. Anthony Dahlinger told the Idaho Statesman in an email on Monday. “When we receive the official documentation of his waiver of extradition, the process of transporting him to Idaho can begin.”

Police in Idaho have not been able to reveal much about what led them to Kohberger. The probable cause affidavit, which will contain details and lay out the case against him, is sealed under Idaho law and won’t become public until he is extradited and appears before an Idaho judge.

“This is not the end of this investigation. In fact, this is a new beginning,” Thompson said Friday.

Asked about the police decision to keep information about the investigation guarded as it proceeded, Moscow Police Chief James Fry said Friday that he “stands 100% behind” that move. He acknowledged that doing so had frustrated the public, but said it was necessary.

“We want to have a situation that when this goes to trial, there’s no doubt that we’ve done everything right,” he said.

LaBar told kohberger-parents-idaho-murders/12638210/”>A B C that Kohberger and his father drove together to Pennsylvania after his father flew to Washington state for a planned holiday road trip. They took his white Hyundai Elantra, LaBar said. Police had been searching for a vehicle matching that description after they said it was seen in security footage of the night of the crime.

“Driving cross country took them about two and a half days. Mr. Kohberger indicated that Bryan was acting normally and not out of character during that drive from Washington,” LaBar told ABC.

LaBar on Sunday shared a Kohberger family statement with the Idaho Statesman.

“First and foremost we care deeply for the four families who have lost their precious children,” the statement read. “There are no words that can adequately express the sadness we feel, and we pray each day for them. We will continue to let the legal process unfold and as a family we will love and support our sons and brothers.”

The family — Kohberger’s parents and two sisters, LaBar said — asked for privacy and said they had fully cooperated with law enforcement investigations.

this story was originally published January 2, 2023 3:56 PM.

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Reporter Sally Krutzig covers local government, growth and breaking news for the Idaho Statesman. She previously covered the Idaho State Legislature for the Post Register.

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