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What we know about the man arrested in connection with the Idaho quadruple murders

Suspect in Idaho murders to waive extradition
Suspect in Idaho college murders to waive extradition 02:03

More than six weeks after four college students were slain in an off-campus home in Moscow, Idaho, police have arrested a suspect, Bryan Christopher Kohberger, in connection with the murders. The 28-year-old was arrested on a fugitive from justice warrant in Pennsylvania, police announced Friday, Dec. 30.

Pennsylvania State Police said they assisted the Moscow police department, the Idaho State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the apprehension. A law enforcement source told CBS News Kohberger was arrested at his parents' home in Albrightsville, Pennsylvania. 

Kohberger is facing four counts of first-degree murder and felony burglary, Latah County, Idaho, prosecutor Bill Thompson said during a Friday news conference

Monroe County chief public defender Jason LaBar, who is representing Kohberger for his extradition hearing in Pennsylvania, told CBS News that police said they knocked on the Kohbergers' door around 3 a.m. Friday and both the parents and the suspect were "very cooperative."

Kohberger is being held without bond in Monroe County Correctional Facility, where he is awaiting extradition to Idaho. His lawyer said Kohberger would not fight the plan to extradite him to Idaho to face the charges. Kohberger is set to appear before a judge on Tuesday, Jan. 3, LaBar said, and is expected to sign off on relevant paperwork in court in lieu of an extradition hearing. 

Bryan Christopher Kohberger
Bryan Christopher Kohberger was taken into custody in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, Dec. 30, 2022, in connection with November murders of four University of Idaho students. Monroe County Correctional Facility

Kohberger could be in Idaho as little as 72 hours later, he added. "Because of obviously the attention of this case, I assume Idaho is prepared and ready to transport him back already," LaBar said, noting that he anticipates "it's going to happen pretty quickly," even though legal procedure technically allows a 10-day waiting period.

So far, few details are publicly known about Kohberger's alleged actions the night of the brutal killings of four University of Idaho students last November. 

Madison Mogen, Kaylee Goncalves, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin were stabbed to death at an off-campus rental home during the early morning hours of Nov. 13, and the weeks that followed without an arrest gave rise to mounting national publicity as well as anxiety and speculation about who was responsible.

Idaho authorities said Friday that state law limits how much information they can currently release about aspects of the quadruple homicide investigation that led them to Kohberger, and the probable cause statement will remain sealed until the suspect appears in an Idaho court.

Who is Bryan Kohberger? 

Kohberger was born on Nov. 21, 1994. In 2018, he finished an associate's degree in psychology at Northampton Community College, then went on to complete a bachelor's degree at DeSales University in 2020. He then did further graduate studies at the university, completing those in 2022, a representative for DeSales confirmed.  

At the time of his arrest, Kohberger was a Ph.D. criminology student and teaching assistant at Washington State University's Pullman campus, which is only about a 15-minute drive from Moscow, Idaho. Kohberger had just finished his first semester at WSU, the school said in a statement

In a separate statement released the following day, WSU's Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology said it was "relieved that justice will be carried out."

"The Department  of Criminal Justice and Criminology at Washington State University is aggrieved by the alleged horrendous acts of one of its graduate students," read the Dec. 31 statement, which was posted to the department's homepage on the university's website. "We are relieved that justice will be carried out. Our hearts are with the victims' families."

Moscow Police Chief James Fry confirmed in a press conference that Kohberger lived in Washington state, and the college said that university police assisted Idaho law enforcement officials in executing a search warrant at Kohberger's on-campus apartment and office on Friday. 

"On behalf of the WSU Pullman community, I want to offer my sincere thanks to all of the law enforcement agencies that have been working tirelessly to solve this crime," said Elizabeth Chilton, chancellor of the WSU Pullman campus and WSU provost. "This horrific act has shaken everyone in the Palouse region."

Suspect charged with Idaho murders could be extradited as early as next week 01:58

A fellow graduate student in the criminology and criminal justice department at WSU told The Associated Press that the news of Kohberger's arrest was "pretty out of left field."

Ben Roberts said he took several courses with Kohberger after the two started the program together in August. Kohberger "was always looking for a way to fit in," Roberts told the AP.

Roberts said Kohberger would "find the most complicated way to explain something."

"He had to make sure you knew that he knew it," Roberts added.

LaBar described Kohberger as "very calm. He's very intelligent, and he was fairly shocked" by the arrest.

His parents were "just really shocked," LaBar said, and they said this is "out of character" for their son.

In a statement LaBar shared Sunday on behalf of Kohberger's parents and two sisters, the family said they were praying for the families of the victims, and said they "have fully cooperated with law enforcement agencies" in the investigation.

"First and foremost we care deeply for the four families who have lost their precious children. There are no words that can adequately express the sadness we feel, and we pray each day for them," Kohberger's family said in the statement. "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 son and brother," they added. "We have fully cooperated with law enforcement agencies in an attempt to seek the truth and promote his presumption of innocence rather than judge unknown facts and make erroneous assumptions. We respect privacy in this matter as our family and the families suffering loss can move forward through the legal process."

Where does the investigation stand? 

During Friday's press conference, officials were wary of sharing many details of the investigation, including those that led to Kohberger's arrest. Fry said that the information was not being shared to preserve the integrity of the investigation and to stay in line with Idaho law. 

Police announce arrest in murders of 4 University of Idaho students 24:38

The police chief said some of the 19,000 tips that police received were integral to arresting Kohberger, but declined to say when he became a suspect or what brought him to their attention. Law enforcement sources told CBS News that forensic analysis allegedly linked Kohberger to the crime scene in Idaho. 

Those sources told CBS News that FBI agents had conducted surveillance operations on Kohberger in Pennsylvania, tracking his movements on the days before he was taken into custody. Fry said that it was a "fairly sleepless couple days" leading up to Kohberger's arrest. 

"I have faith in those agencies across the nation, I have faith in our officers, I have faith in the FBI, and they did a great job," Fry said. 

Fry said police have not found the murder weapon, but that they had recovered a Hyundai Elantra. Investigators said several weeks ago that they were looking for the occupant or occupants of a 2011-2013 white Hyundai Elantra that was "in the area" when the students were killed.

According to Kohberger's lawyer, Kohberger and his father drove home together from Pullman, Washington, to Pennsylvania in the Elantra. The drive took about two and a half days and had been pre-planned from when Kohberger started classes at Washington State University. The two arrived in Pennsylvania around Dec. 17, the lawyer said. 

More information, including the factual basis for the charges that were filed, will be revealed when a probable cause affidavit is unsealed, which won't happen until Kohberger returns to Idaho and is served with an arrest warrant there. Kohberger is next expected to appear in court in Pennsylvania on Tuesday afternoon.

Fry also declined to say if there was any possible connection between the victims and Kohberger, and did not share a motive for the killings

"These murders have shaken our community and no arrest will ever bring back these young students. However, we do believe justice will be found through the criminal process," Fry said. 

Anam Siddiq and Emily Mae Czachor contributed to this report.

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