Judge issues temporary stay in Bryan Kohberger murder trial

Posted at 2:12 PM, July 11, 2023


MOSCOW, Idaho (Court TV) — An Idaho judge has issued a brief stay in the case of Bryan Kohberger, the man accused of killing four University of Idaho students.

Bryan Kohberger enters the courtroom for a motion hearing

Bryan Kohberger enters the courtroom for a motion hearing regarding a gag order, Friday, June 9, 2023, in Latah County District Court in Moscow, Idaho. A judge overseeing the case against Kohberger, charged with killing four University of Idaho students last fall, is set to hear arguments over a gag order that largely bars attorneys and other parties in the case from speaking with news reporters. (Zach Wilkinson/Moscow-Pullman Daily News via AP, Pool)

Kohberger, 28, is charged with four counts of murder in the deaths of Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin, who were stabbed to death in their home on Nov. 13, 2022. He is also charged with one count of burglary.

RELATED: Bryan Kohberger Requests Stay of Proceedings

In an order issued Monday, Judge John Judge issued a partial stay of proceedings. Kohberger’s attorneys had requested a stay of the proceedings in June, saying they intended to argue that there were issues with the grand jury. In his decision, Judge said that because the defense had only received the clerk’s record and recording of the grand jury materials on July 6, and that the transcript wouldn’t be available until July 21, it was premature for the defense to argue issues with the proceedings.

However, Judge noted that the delay in preparing the transcript and gathering the grand jury materials merited a stay to allow for the defense adequate time to review them. Judge specifically limited the 37-day stay to the “running of speedy trial” and noted that it will not impact Kohberger’s requirement to submit his alibi to the state by July 24.

Idaho law defines a speedy trial as beginning within 6 months of the defendant’s arraignment. Kohberger was arraigned on May 22, 2023. While the initial trial date, scheduled to begin October 2, 2023, was not changed in the order, Judge said it may be moved in the future if either prosecutors or the defense feel the extra 37 days are needed to prepare for trial.

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In a separate order, issued July 7, Judge ordered Latah County to pay for the costs of preparing the grand jury transcription, because Kohberger had previously been found indigent by the state.

Kohberger’s next scheduled court appearance is a motions hearing on August 18.