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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Andrea Blanco

Idaho murders suspect Bryan Kohberger’s family vow to support him after arrest in college student killings


The family of a PhD criminology student accused of killing four University of Idaho students said they will continue to support him as a legal process unfolds.

Bryan Christopher Kohberger, 28, was taken into custody in Pennsylvania early Friday in connection to the quadruple murders of Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin following an investigation by the Moscow Police Department, the FBI and Idaho State Police.

Mr Kohberger’s attorney Monroe County Chief Public Defender Jason LaBar issued a statement to the New York Post on behalf of the family of the Washington State University grad student.

“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,” his family said in a statement made available through Mr LaBar to the New York Post.

“[We] will continue to let the legal process unfold and as a family, we will love and support our son and brother ...We respect privacy in this matter as our family and the families suffering loss can move forward through the legal process.”

The family also said that “there are no words that can adequately express the sadness we feel, and we pray each day for [the victims].”

Mr LaBar had previously told CNN that his client intends to waive his 3 January extradition hearing in the Keystone state to expedite his return to Idaho.

In a press conference on Friday, Moscow Police said that more information about the circumstances leading up to the arrest would be released once Mr Kohberger appears in court in Idaho, as his arrest warrant will remain sealed until then following state law.

Mr LaBar is only representing Mr Kohberger before he is extradited to Idaho. He said his client and his family cooperated with police after agents raided their home around 3am on Friday.

Bryan Christopher Kohberger, 28, was taken into custody in Pennsylvania early Friday in connection to the quadruple murders of Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin (AP)

“They’re also very shocked,” Mr LaBar told CNN. “Out of character for Bryan… The FBI, local police, Idaho State Troopers were at their house at approximately 3 a. m. yesterday knocking on the door and announcing themselves to enter, out of real shock and awe to them.”

Mr Kohberger is a PhD graduate student in the criminal justice and criminology department in Pullman, Washington, around nine miles west of Moscow, where the students lived and were murdered.

Mr Fry on Friday said he was prevented by state law from revealing what tipped police off to Kohberger’s arrest until the suspect has been extradited to Idaho.

“We have an individual in custody who committed these horrible crimes, and I believe the community is safe,” Mr Fry said.

The murder weapon has not yet been found, and Mr Fry urged anyone with knowledge of Kohberger to contact authorities with any information about the suspect whatsoever.

Prior to his arrest, Mr Fry said the department had received over 19,000 tips and conducted 300 interviews.

“These murders have shaken our community and no arrest could ever bring back these young students,” he said.

He added that authorities had located a Hyundai Elantra that had been spotted in the vicinity of the students’ flat on the night they died.

“Be assured the work is not done, this is just getting started,” he said.

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