Idaho Murder Case: Surviving Roommate Recalls Hearing Cries and Seeing Killer in House

The investigation into the brutal murders of four University of Idaho students is detailed in a newly unsealed affidavit, including how authorities say they linked suspect Bryan Kohberger to the case.

By Gabrielle Chung Jan 06, 2023 12:25 AMTags
Watch: Bryan Kohberger's DNA Found at Idaho Murder Scene

A newly unsealed affidavit has revealed chilling details into the investigation of Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin's murders.

The four University of Idaho students were found stabbed to death in an off-campus home in Moscow, Idaho, on Nov. 13, sending shockwaves across the community. The three young women lived there as roommates, while Kernodle's boyfriend Chapin slept over on the night they were killed. Two other roommates were not injured in the incident.

Now, court documents obtained by E! News on Jan. 5 offer insight into how authorities say they were able to link suspect Bryan Kohberger—who was arrested in December and charged with four counts of murder and one count of felony burglary—to the fatal stabbings, as well as an account of the night of the killings from one of the surviving roommates.

The roommate, identified only as D.M. in the affidavit, told investigators that she heard crying in the house after 4 a.m. and a male voice say something to the effect of "it's ok, I'm going to help you." When she opened her bedroom door, D.M. said she saw a male figure "clad in black clothing and a mask that covered the person's mouth and nose walking towards her," per the document.

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D.M. said the figure, described to be taller than 5'10" with "bushy eyebrows," walked past her as she stood in a "frozen shock phase," according to the document. She told investigators she then locked herself in her room.

Investigators believe the murders took place between 4 a.m. and 4:25 a.m. Per the affidavit, DNA was found on the button snap of a knife sheath near Goncalves and Mogen's bodies, and investigators allege they were able to connect Kohberger to it by matching the sample to DNA taken from trash at his parents' Pennsylvania home, where he was taken into police custody.

Kohberger's public defender in Pennsylvania, Jason LaBar, previously said his client believes he'll be exonerated.

"He said this is not him," LaBar told Today on Jan. 3. "He believes he's going to be exonerated. That's what he believes, those were his words."


The affidavit, which was unsealed following Kohberger's extradition back to Idaho, also disclosed that a phone associated with the suspect was pinged near the home where the murders took place at least 12 times leading up to Nov. 13. Per the filing, "All of these occasions, except for one, occurred in the late evening and early morning hours of their respective days."

The phone was pinged leaving Kohberger's home in Pullman, Wash., around 2:47 a.m. on Nov. 13, but stopped reporting to the cellular network after that time, according to the affidavit. It returned to the network around 4:48 a.m. using cellular coverage provided from a state highway south of Moscow, Idaho, before being pinged in Pullman again around 5:30 a.m.

According to the affidavit, the phone's pings are consistent with video surveillance sightings of a white sedan matching the description of Kohberger's 2015 white Hyundai Elantra. In footage gathered as part of the investigation, a white sedan was spotted leaving the area of Goncalves, Mogen and Kernodle's home at a high speed around 4:20 a.m. and was also seen near Kohberger's home at approximately 5:27 a.m., per the court docs.

Authorities located Kohberger's Elantra at his parents' home when they arrested him there on Dec. 30.

Monroe County Correctional Facil/UPI/Shutterstock

motive for the killings has not been publicly identified, as Moscow Police Chief James Fry said at the time of Kohberger's arrest that investigators "are still trying to build that picture."

"This was a very complex and extensive case," he added. "Since November, we have remained laser focused on pursuing every lead."

E! News has reached out to Kohberger's attorney for comment but hasn't heard back. 

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