CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

Prosecutors seeking death penalty against man accused of slaying of 4 University of Idaho students

Jun 26, 2023, 3:49 PM | Updated: 3:57 pm

university of idaho memorial...

A memorial for four students found dead in their residence is seen in front of a University of Idaho campus sign, in Moscow, Idaho, U.S., November 29, 2022. (Photo courtesy of Lindsey Wasson, Reuters)

(Photo courtesy of Lindsey Wasson, Reuters)

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Prosecutors say they are seeking the death penalty against a man accused of stabbing four University of Idaho students to death late last year.

Bryan Kohberger, 28, is charged with four counts of murder in connection with the deaths at a rental house near the Moscow, Idaho, university campus last November. Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson filed the notice of his intent to seek the death penalty in court on Monday.

A not-guilty plea was entered in the case on Kohberger’s behalf earlier this year. A hearing in the case is scheduled for Tuesday.

The bodies of Madison Mogen, Kaylee Goncalves, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin were found on Nov. 13, 2022, at a rental home across the street from the University of Idaho campus. The slayings shocked the rural Idaho community and neighboring Pullman, Washington, where Kohberger was a graduate student studying criminology at Washington State University.

Police released few details about the investigation until after Kohberger was arrested at his parents’ home in eastern Pennsylvania early Dec. 30, 2022. Court documents detailed how police pieced together DNA evidence, cellphone data and surveillance video that they say links Kohberger to the slayings.

Investigators said traces of DNA found on a knife sheath inside the home where the students were killed matches Kohberger, and that a cellphone belonging to Kohberger was near the victims’ home on a dozen occasions before the killings. A white sedan allegedly matching one owned by Kohberger was caught on surveillance footage repeatedly cruising past the rental home around the time of the killings.

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Prosecutors seeking death penalty against man accused of slaying of 4 University of Idaho students