BOISE, Idaho — Pennsylvania police and the FBI seized a dozen items from the home of Bryan Kohberger’s parents in eastern Pennsylvania, including black clothing and his size 13 Nike shoes, and also took a DNA swab of the Idaho homicide suspect’s mouth, according to an unsealed search warrant released Tuesday and obtained by The Idaho Statesman.
During Kohberger’s arrest in the early morning hours on Dec. 30 at the family home in Albrightsville, police took a large black Washington State University Cougars sweatshirt, and black socks, shorts and underwear, the documents state. They also retrieved four medical-style gloves, a large white T-shirt and a silver flashlight.
Kohberger, 28, was a Washington State graduate student in the criminal justice and criminology department. He was arrested and charged with four counts of first-degree murder in the Nov. 13 slaying of four University of Idaho students in Moscow. The victims were University of Idaho seniors Madison Mogen and Kaylee Goncalves, each 21, junior Xana Kernodle, 20, and freshman Ethan Chapin, 20.
The law enforcement search was conducted at approximately 1:25 a.m. on Dec. 30, according to the records.
As with the search warrant for Kohberger’s WSU student apartment in Pullman, Washington, executed the same day as his arrest in Pennsylvania, police were seeking any dark clothing; shoes with a diamond-pattern sole; blood or items that contained blood or bodily fluids; and all weapons to include knives and knife sheaths — or receipts for such purchases. In addition, police sought any possible property of the four victims, as well as two surviving housemates.
At the request of the Whitman County prosecutor, a Washington judge unsealed that search warrant in mid-January.
From Kohberger’s Pullman apartment, police seized a black rubber glove, red-stained bedding and a vacuum dust container, the records showed. They also took a desktop computer tower, an Amazon Fire TV Stick cord/plug, a Walmart sales receipt and two Marshalls department store receipts, and 13 possible hair strands — one that could have been from an animal.
No items were seized in a separate search of Kohberger’s shared office at Washington State, the records stated.
In none of the three searches did police report finding a weapon. The victims were stabbed to death with a large knife, investigators have said. Detectives found a Ka-Bar brand leather knife sheath on the bed next to Mogen’s body in the off-campus home in Moscow where the four victims were found, according to the probable cause affidavit for Kohberger’s arrest and the search warrants.
From a button snap on the knife sheath, investigators located a single source of male DNA they later linked to Kohberger, according to the affidavit. In late December, Pennsylvania police took trash from the Kohbergers’ Pennsylvania home and identified the sheath DNA as belonging to the son of the DNA profile obtained from the trash, which was part of a separate search warrant not addressed in the records unsealed Tuesday.
One of two surviving housemates in the Moscow rental home told police that she saw an athletically built man, 5-foot-10 or taller, in black clothing and a mask that covered his mouth and nose inside the home around the time of the incident, the affidavit read. Investigators later found a latent shoe print with a diamond-shaped pattern just outside the door of a second-floor bedroom, but did not identify the size of the shoe that left the print.
The search warrant for the home of Kohberger’s parents — listed as a single-family residence with white siding, attached garage and a small shed at the back of the property — also sought all electronic devices and any vehicles to which Kohberger had access, including his white 2015 Hyundai Elantra. The search warrant return record does not report the seizing of Kohberger’s cellphone or his car, though each is now in police custody.
A Monroe County District Court judge who signed off on the search warrant on Dec. 29 placed it under 60-day seal, and the first of those documents was released by the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts on Tuesday. Additional search warrant-related records are expected to be unsealed Wednesday, according to a spokesperson for the state’s administrative courts office.
A court-issued gag order remains in effect in the case, restricting law enforcement, attorneys on both sides and attorneys representing the witnesses and victims’ families from publicly sharing information with the public outside of court filings. More than two dozen media outlets, including the Statesman, are contesting the order in the Idaho Supreme Court.
Kohberger’s next court hearing is scheduled for June 26.
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