Former FBI official explains how agents tracked and monitored Bryan Kohberger

A former FBI official has praised the bureau’s surveillance capabilities when explaining how Bryan Kohberger was tracked in connection with the Moscow, Idaho murders.

Kohberger, a 28-year-old Ph.D. student and teaching assistant at Washington State University, was arrested early Friday morning and charged with the murder of four University of Idaho students in mid-November that rocked the college town of Moscow. Police believe Kohberger broke into the students’ shared living space “with intent to commit murder” before traveling across the country to visit his parents in Chestnuthill Township, Pennsylvania, where he was eventually arrested.

Appearing on CNN on Saturday, Andrew McCabe, who served as the FBI’s deputy director from 2016 to 2018, explained how officers were able to watch the suspect delicately over the past few weeks. As he explained, Kohberger was on investigators’ “radar” before he left Idaho for Pennsylvania, allowing officers to track him from the start.

“It’s an incredibly complicated and well-choreographed ballet, if you will, of surveillance efforts that would cross multiple FBI field divisions,” McCabe said. “Would involve several surveillance teams that followed him in certain areas and handed him over to new teams.”

Above, the exterior of an FBI building. A former FBI official, Andrew McCabe, has praised the bureau’s surveillance capabilities when explaining how Bryan Kohberger was tracked in connection with the Moscow, Idaho murders.
Brooks Kraft/Corbis via Getty Images

McCabe also explained that once in Pennsylvania, surveillance efforts surrounding Kohberger required more care and finesse, so as not to stand out from residents, a common problem officers face in rural areas like this. .

“That surveillance ends in Pennsylvania, which we call a very rural area,” he added. “It can be very difficult to watch someone in these circumstances because any type of vehicle or person that is not normally from this area really stands out from the local population and of course the subject. So great job from the FBI surveillance teams here so they can keep tabs on this while investigators and prosecutors work in Idaho, they get their probable cause, show up in front of a judge, and get a warrant for their arrest. .

Chief Public Defender Jason LaBar, the attorney representing Kohberger, said his client plans to waive his extradition hearing on Tuesday so he can be returned to Idaho quickly to contest the charges against him.

“Mr. Kohberger is eager to be cleared of these charges and looks forward to resolving these matters as quickly as possible,” LaBar said in a statement. “Mr. Kohberger has been charged with very serious crimes, but the American justice system shrouds him in a veil of innocence. He should be presumed innocent until proven guilty, not tried in the court of public opinion. .”

Moscow Police Department Captain Anthony Dahlinger said Saturday that officials were certain Kohberger was responsible for the murders of students Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin. It has not yet been revealed whether Kohberger knew of any of them or what their potential motives might have been.

Newsweek contacted the FBI for comment.


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