In November of last year, Ethan Chapin, aged 20; Madison Mogen, aged 21; Kaylee Goncalves, aged 21; and Xana Kernodle, aged 20, were discovered dead with stab wounds at the rental house located off-campus. According to Bryan Kohberger’s legal representatives, he was not present at the scene. On that particular night, he was driving alone. This marks the initial instance where Kohberger or his defense lawyers have provided any information regarding his location.
Investigators said that after four murders, Kohberger, a former 28-year-old criminology student, was charged and arrested. They linked him to the crimes through surveillance footage, cell phone data, and DNA evidence. In June, court filings revealed that a sheath knife, which had Kohberger’s DNA, was found near one of the bodies, and it was a statistically significant match.
Prior court documents stated that the vehicle was captured on video on a minimum of four occasions during the early hours of the day the murders occurred before swiftly departing. Surveillance footage from neighborhood security cameras also assisted law enforcement in determining a vehicle that was allegedly possessed by Kohberger. A search warrant executed by the police previously disclosed that Kohberger’s phone was traced to the vicinity of the students’ residence on at least 12 occasions within the six-month period leading up to the assault.
Kohberger’s defense counsel asserted in legal documents this week that he was away operating a vehicle during the evening of November 12 and extending into the early hours of November 13.
Mr. Kohberger has long had a habit of often going for drives alone at night, says the court filing.
The filing states that he has expressed his expectation of having supporting witnesses. Nonetheless, the filing mentioned that Kohberger does not possess a particular witness to substantiate his claim of being out driving instead of being at the house, and he is not asserting to be present at any specific location during a specific timeframe.
Filing a motion in court, the defense team provided an alibi to Kohberger, urging the prosecutors to respond. However, it is still too early to disclose the additional information regarding what Kohberger did, where he was that night, and the evidence that supports his defense.
According to State law, defendants are required to inform the prosecutors and court if they plan to present an alibi as part of their defense, including specific details such as where they were at the time of the crime and any corroborating witnesses. Mr. Kohberger has fully complied with this requirement.
DNA PROFILING: How did investigators determine the perpetrator in the Idaho student murders?
Kohberger may be subject to capital punishment
The killings near the University of Idaho, in Idaho, rocked the community of the university. The bodies of the students were discovered on November 13 by one of their roommates, without any leads on the suspect after subsequent weeks.
Investigators say Kohberger was a Ph.D. Student in criminology at the University of Idaho, located across the state line from the nearby Washington State University.
Kohberger, a plea of not guilty, was submitted by a judge, and he is anticipated to proceed to trial later this autumn, although it might be delayed. If he is found guilty of the homicides, prosecutors have expressed their intention to pursue capital punishment for Kohberger.