BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The man accused of killing four University of Idaho students in November has been released from a Pennsylvania prison into the custody of state police, officials said Wednesday morning, which means he faces first-degree murder. May go to Idaho for murder charges.
Brian Kohberger, 28 Doctoral Student at Washington State University – a short drive from the scene of the murders across the state border – told a judge Tuesday he will not fight extradition to Idaho.
A spokesman for the Pennsylvania State Police declined to provide any additional information on the status of Kohberger’s extradition, citing security reasons.
Officials have released few details about the investigation and an Idaho judge has issued a gag order barring police and attorneys from talking about the case. But the court filings — including a document detailing Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson’s reasons for charging Kohberger with the murders — are expected to be unsealed after Kohberger arrives in Idaho.
kohburger was arrested last week At his parents’ home in Chesterhill Township in eastern Pennsylvania.
The nighttime attack on a Moscow home near the University of Idaho campus sparked fear in the surrounding community as officers were seen exposed to the brutal stabbing. However, later investigators appeared to make a breakthrough looking for a white sedan Which was seen at the time of the murders and DNA evidence collected from the crime scene was analyzed.
Investigators have said they are still looking for a motive and the weapon used in the attack.
the bodies of Kaylee Goncalves, 21, of Rathdrum, Idaho; Madison Mogen, 21, of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; Xana Kernodle, 20, Post Falls, Idaho; and Ethan Chapin, 20, of Conway, Washington, were found Nov. 13 in the rental home where the women lived. Kernodle and Chapin were dating, and he had come home that night.
Latah County, Idaho, prosecutors have said they believe Kohberger entered the victims’ home with intent to commit murder.
Jason Labar, chief public defender in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, said Kohberger is eager to be exonerated and should be presumed innocent and ” not tried in the court of public opinion,
After Tuesday’s hearing, Labar described Kohberger as “a simple guy” and said he would be represented by the chief public defender in Kootenai County, Idaho, after his extradition.
Although Moscow police have remained tight-lipped about the investigation, investigators last month asked the public for help finding a white sedan that was seen near the scene of the crime — specifically, a 2011-2013 Hyundai Elantra. Tips poured in and investigators soon announced they were sifting through a pool of approximately 20,000 possible vehicles.
Meanwhile, Kohberger apparently remained in Pullman, Washington until the end of the semester at WSU. He then moved with his father across the country to his parents’ home in Pennsylvania. They were in a white Elantra.
While driving through Indiana, Kohberger was pulled over twice that same day—first by a Hancock County sheriff’s deputy and a few minutes later by an Indiana state trooper.
Body camera video of the first stop released by the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office on Dec. 15 shows Kohberger behind the wheel and her father in the passenger seat. Both men told the law enforcement officer they were traveling from WSU before the officer sent them on their way with a warning to follow closely.
Indiana State Police released bodycam footage of the second stop. The agency said that at that time, there was no information available with the trooper that could identify Kohberger as a suspect in the killings. Kohberger was again warned against following too closely.
Associated Press writers Mark Levy in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Manuel Valdes in Seattle contributed to this story.
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