What is Bryan Kohberger’s legal strategy?

  • Kohberger is accused of murdering four University of Idaho students
  • He could face the death penalty after being charged with murder
  • Families of the victims have called for justice in the case

(NewsNation) — Idaho murder suspect Bryan Kohberger was arraigned on four counts of murder and one count of burglary on Monday. NewsNation’s Ashleigh Banfield discussed the arraignment and what it might say about Kohberger’s case.

The 28-year-old former Ph.D student is accused of killing four University of Idaho students, Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin. All of the students were stabbed as they slept in an off-campus apartment the girls shared.

In court, Kohberger remained silent as he was arraigned and the judge entered a not guilty plea on his behalf.

Banfield noted that Kohberger responded clearly to all other questions except how he would plead.

“I don’t know what this strategy is. I’m still kind of researching Idaho law to see if there’s something there, but I can’t see it personally,” Banfield said.

The trial is currently set for Oct. 2, 2023.

“I don’t think we’re going to have a trial in October,” Banfield said. “I think this was sort of a ‘Let’s put it on the record for a speedy trial.'”

Discovery, a process where the prosecution is required to turn evidence over to the defense team, may be one reason for a potential delay. It’s also possible Kohberger will have his own ideas about his defense that may run contrary to what his lawyers plan, Banfield suggested.

“But let’s be really clear. The program that he was studying criminal justice is not law. Criminal justice is not a law degree,” she said.

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