Cellphone expert testifies missing data benefits University of Idaho murder suspect Bryan Kohberger

“Because of the piecemealing of the data, because of the missing data, because of the data I’m reviewing that is incredibly inaccurate, everything that is missing is absolutely in benefit of the defense right now,” Ray testified, adding, “There are other reports that are missing that I can’t tell you are benefitting of Mr. Kohberger or the state.”

He added that it’s unclear why certain data is unavailable: “Is this human error? Is it accidental? Is it intentional?”

What he’s seen so far, he said, appears to be “exculpatory” to Kohberger.

Ray, a former police detective in Arizona, testified that he typically has been an expert witness for the prosecution in criminal cases. His expertise has previously come under scrutiny.

Earlier in Thursday’s hearing, a lead investigator with the Moscow Police Department testified that thousands of hours of surveillance video were collected in relation to a Hyundai Elantra that prosecutors say Kohberger was driving when he left his apartment in Washington state, 9½ miles away from where the murders took place in Moscow, Idaho.

Thursday’s testimonies were part of an ongoing attempt by the defense to ask the judge to compel prosecutors to turn over certain evidence in the discovery phase. DNA experts were expected to be called during a later hearing closed to the public. Prosecutors have previously argued that they are not purposefully withholding information.

The slow pace of the pretrial hearings and discussions hanging over such a high-profile case has only delayed the trial and pushed back a trial date to spring or summer 2025 — frustrating families of the victims who say their ability to heal has been impeded.

Three of the victims — Kaylee Goncalves, 21; Madison Mogen, 21; Xana Kernodle, 20 — lived in an apartment house near the University of Idaho, where they were students. Kernodle’s boyfriend, Ethan Chapin, 20, had been staying over and was also killed in the early morning hours of Nov. 13, 2022.

In an affidavit following Kohberger’s arrest weeks after the killings, prosecutors said he was linked to the scene through male DNA discovered on a knife sheath left at the victims’ apartment house. Investigators also said his cellphone use and video surveillance connected him to the crime.

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