The Idaho Murders Arraignment Today, What to Expect as Bryan Kohberger is in Court
Here is everything you need to know about the Monday hearing, including how to watch it.
Bryan Kohberger has been sitting in a cell at the Latah County Jail for months, awaiting his preliminary hearing. However, in a shocking twist, the Idaho Grand Jury indicted the accused killer last week, eliminating the need for a preliminary hearing. Instead, he will appear in the courtroom on Monday, where he will face charges stemming from the November 2022 murder of four University of Idaho students Kaylee Goncalves, 21; Madison Mogen, 21; Xana Kernodle, 20; and Ethan Chapin, 20. Here is what to expect when the accused killer enters the courtroom on Monday.
At the previously planned June court date, the prosecution would be expected to outline their case against the Pennsylvania native with the intention of convincing a judge that there was enough evidence against him to indict him.
However, the Idaho grand jury opted to indict him and charge him with the crimes, eliminating the need for a preliminary trial, which would involve presenting evidence and calling witnesses to testify.
This major move by the grand jury means that the state believes there is enough evidence against him to charge him with the crimes. Kohberger has been charged with first-degree murder and one count of burglary
According to NBC News, the prosecutors' decision to impanel a grand jury "was not anticipated and allows the state to avoid the week-long preliminary hearing that would have required it to present evidence before a judge as well as permit the defense counsel to cross-examine witnesses."
At the arraignment on Monday, Kohberger will be asked to enter a plea: Guilty or Not Guilty. If he pleads Not Guilty, the state will order a presentence investigation. This would involve an assigned investigator compiling a confidential presentence report. This would help the judge determine an appropriate sentence for the crimes but eliminate the need for a trial.
However, it is expected that Kohberger will enter a Not Guilty plea. At that point, the judge would schedule a trial at a later date. There is no information at this time as to when the trial would commence.
"I think he is sitting around calculating how he will beat this case in trial," Scott Curtis, Retired FBI Special Agent, tells WFMZ. "He seems like an individual who thinks he's smarter than everybody else and he's very calculated."
"He'll show up for court, the judge will read the charges against him, and then he will enter a plea on those charges either directly or through his attorney," Curtis continued. "This hearing here, we won't learn any facts or evidence about the case. This is more of a formality to get it on the record, to get his plea to the charges on the record."
Kohberger's arraignment is scheduled for 9:00 am PST / 12:00 EST. You can watch the arraignment on WFLA's YouTube channel.