Idaho prosecutors explained in detail how they came to believe it was the DNA of student murders’ suspect Bryan Kohberger that they recovered from a knife sheath near the body of Madison Mogen in November.
Once they had a cheek swab, they found a “statistical match.”
“A traditional STR DNA comparison was done between the STR profile found on the Ka-Bar knife sheath and Defendant’s DNA,” prosecutors revealed in court filings this week. “The comparison showed a statistical match.”
Mogen, 21, and three friends, Kaylee Goncalves, 21, Xana Kernodle, 20, and Ethan Chapin, 20, were all stabbed to death during a 4 a.m. home invasion, according to court documents.
Read the prosecutors’ filing (Mobile users go here):
Police began using relatively new and publicly available investigative genetic genealogy techniques, according to the court documents. The FBI began checking the sample against publicly available DNA databases and subscription-only archives exclusive to law enforcement, according to the filing.
Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson speaks with public defender Anne Taylor during an arraignment hearing for Bryan Kohberger, who is accused of killing four University of Idaho students in November 2022, in Latah County District Court, Monday, May 22, 2023, in Moscow, Idaho. (Zach Wilkinson/Moscow-Pullman Daily News via Pool)
STR, or short tandem repeat, is a common type of DNA testing used in criminal cases, according to the National Institute of Justice, which says an STR match “can give nearly irrefutable evidence statistically of a person’s identity.”
The revelations came in a motion for a protective order in response to Kohberger’s attempts for more discovery materials.