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Crime News University of Idaho Murders

University Of Idaho Murder Suspect Appears In Court, Waives Right To A Speedy Preliminary Hearing

Bryan Kohberger remained relatively quiet during the brief hearing, only answering questions posed to him directly by the judge.

By Jill Sederstrom
Suspect In University Of Idaho Students' Killings Arrested

University of Idaho murder suspect Bryan Kohberger was briefly back in court Thursday to waive his right to a speedy preliminary hearing.

Kohberger, who is facing four counts of first-degree murder and one count of burglary for the Nov. 13 quadruple homicide of four college students, appeared in the Latah County courtroom Thursday morning wearing an orange prison uniform and shackles, according to CNN.

During the brief hearing, which lasted less than 10 minutes, Kohberger, 28, waived his right to a speedy probable cause hearing through his attorney, which otherwise would have needed to be completed within a 14-day window.

Kootenai County Public Defender Anne Taylor, who is representing Kohberger, said she needed more time to evaluate the evidence in the case, Fox News reports.

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As a result, Magistrate Judge Megan Marshall set the preliminary hearing date for 9 a.m. on June 26. It’s slated to last five days, at the conclusion of which a judge will be tasked with determining whether there is enough evidence against Kohberger to proceed with the criminal charges against him.

Bryan Kohberger

Kohberger remained relatively quiet throughout the brief hearing, only answering questions posed to him by the judge.

Taylor requested discovery from the prosecutors—including statements made by Kohberger to authorities, evidence in the case, test results, digital media recordings like surveillance footage and a list of potential witnesses—in documents filed in court Tuesday and obtained by Oxygen.com.

Kohberger has been accused of breaking into an off-campus residence in Moscow, Idaho in the early morning hours of Nov. 13 and fatally stabbing four of the occupants inside the home, in a crime that has stunned the small college community.

Moscow Police have said Kaylee Goncalves, 21; Madison Mogen, 21; Xana Kernodle, 20; and Ethan Chapin, 20, were all stabbed multiple times.

At the time of the murders, Kohberger had been working as a teaching assistant and PhD student in the criminal justice program at nearby Washington State University, which is located approximately 10 miles away from the crime scene.

He was linked to the brutal murders after investigators were able to match him to DNA found on a leather knife sheath left behind on Mogen’s bed, according to an affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com. Surveillance footage also placed a white Hyundai Elantra, seemingly matching the description of Kohberger’s vehicle, in the area at the time of the murders.

Surviving roommate Dylan Mortensen, referred to in the affidavit only as “D.M.,” also told police she encountered the alleged killer inside the home just after 4 a.m., after she heard someone say “there’s someone here” and the sound of crying.

Mortensen peered out of her bedroom door and saw a man “clad in black,” wearing a mask over his nose and mouth, according to the affidavit. As she stood in a “frozen shock state,” she said the man walked past her and exited out a second-story sliding glass door.

Mortensen locked herself inside her bedroom.

She was able to describe the alleged killer to police as being at least 5’10” tall with “bushy eyebrows” and a slender build.

Investigators have said his cell phone was in the area of the 1122 King Road home on at least 12 occasions before the murders, but an attorney representing Goncalves’ family told Insider that victims did not know Kohberger before the killings.

“No one knew this guy at all,” attorney Shanon Gray said.

Police have not released a motive in the homicides.

Kohberger was taken into custody late last month at his parents’ home in Pennsylvania and extradited back to Idaho last week.