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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Info scant on cost of Kohberger case

By Anthony Kuipers Moscow-Pullman Daily News

Anne Taylor, the Kootenai County public defender representing Bryan Kohberger, is entitled to a payment of $200 per hour, according to documents released by Latah County.

Other costs associated with the case are not being made public.

Latah County District Judge John Judge recently responded to a reporter’s public record request asking about the total cost associated with the ongoing Kohberger case.

Kohberger faces four counts of first-degree murder and one count of burglary in the November 2022 stabbing deaths of University of Idaho students Kaylee Goncalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle and Ethan Chapin. He faces the death penalty if convicted.

Judge wrote that Latah County District Court is not the “custodian judge” for records pertaining to the total cost of the case against Kohberger. It also has no knowledge of the total costs associated with Kohberger’s defense.

“This is to ensure that any decisions made by the Court are not in any way influenced by the cost of the case,” Judge wrote.

Mark Monson, the Nez Perce County district judge, was appointed the resource judge for the case in January 2023. That means he is responsible for decisions related to any requests for additional defense services.

The hourly rate for two of Kohberger’s attorneys at the start of his case is public record, however. According to an order from Judge, Taylor was appointed to represent Kohberger at public expense. She is entitled to payment at a rate of $200 per hour. Jay Logsdon, also of the Public Defender’s Office, is entitled to an hourly rate of $180.

Other costs are not public record, though. According to Judge, some records are sealed to preserve the right to a fair trial.

In September, Latah County Commissioners approved a sizable increase in the county’s trial expenses as a result of the long and complicated Kohberger case. Prosecutor Bill Thompson requested $135,000 for trial expenses, a significant jump from the $15,000 that has been consistently budgeted for that purpose in previous years.

Kohberger’s trial, which was initially scheduled for Oct. 2, 2023, was postponed indefinitely after the suspect waived his right to a speedy trial. A new trial date has not yet been scheduled.