Iowa Murders Suspect Bryan Kohberger Files Official Alibi

The legal team for Bryan Kohberger, the suspect accused of the murder of four University of Idaho students, has doubled down on their claim that the 28-year-old was out driving alone at the time of the murders — and now say they have an expert who can prove it.

Kohberger was arrested in December 2022 as the sole suspect in the stabbing deaths of Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Madison Mogen, 21, Xana Kernodle, 20, and Ethan Chapin, 20 — four University of Idaho students who were killed in their off-campus apartment on Nov. 13, 2022. Kohberger, who was a graduate student at Washington State University at the time of the murders, was linked to the crime by DNA found on a knife sheath. In May 2023, he was indicted by a grand jury on charges of murder. His legal team, helmed by public defender Anne C. Taylor, has alluded in the past that Kohberger had an alibi. Now, according to a notice request filed Wednesday, Kohberger’s legal team has officially claimed the suspect was out driving to see the stars, and phone data can prove his whereabouts.

“After the school year began, Mr. Kohberger was busy with classes and work at Washington State University and his running and hiking decreased but did not stop. Instead, his nighttime drives increased. This is supported by data from Mr. Kohberger’s phone showing him in the countryside late at night and/or in the early morning on several occasions,” the filing reads. “The phone data includes numerous photographs taken on several different late evenings and early mornings, including in November, depicting the night sky.

The alibi filing adds that in the early morning hours on the day of the murders, Kohberger was out to “hike and run and/or see the moon and stars,” a path they claim cell tower data expert Sy Ray will partially corroborate in his testimony.

The filing of Kohberger’s alibi is one of the first steps in the long legal process the Idaho suspect will go through before his day in court. In August 2023, Kohberger waived his right to a speedy trial to allow his legal team more time to prepare. In December 2023, Kohberger’s defense team was allowed to access the house where the murders took place and collect potential evidence. The house was then demolished to aid community healing, according to University President Scott Green.


“It is the grim reminder of the heinous act that took place there,” Green said. “While we appreciate the emotional connection some family members of the victims may have to this house, it is time for its removal and to allow the collective healing of our community to continue.”

Kohberger’s trial date has still not been set. Last year, state prosecutors announced they would be seeking the death penalty.

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