Suspect Arrested in Killing on UT Campus

Austin police continue to investigate what they described as a brutal murder.

Local police arrested a person they believe is responsible for the murder of a student on the University of Texas Austin campus April 3.

Police announced that Meechaiel Criner, who’s described as a 17-year-old runaway, was arrested in connection with the murder of 18-year-old Haruka Weiser.

RELATED: When the Homeless Come to Campus: Balancing Security With Empathy

Few details have been released about the death of Weiser, whose body was found in a creek near the university’s football stadium on April 5.

Police made the arrest after reviewing video surveillance footage of a man taken from a campus building, the Associated Press reports. Austin police declined to confirm that the man in the video was the person arrested, although investigators said they were “very confident” the man in the video was behind Weiser’s killing.

Although Weiser’s cause of death is unknown, authorities have said the freshman dance major’s murder was particularly brutal. No weapon has been recovered, although police confirmed Weiser was assaulted.

RELATED: How to Help Homeless Students

Weiser was last seen leaving a campus building at approximately 9:30 p.m. Sunday night. Her roommates reported her missing the following day.

As investigators worked to piece together the murder, they released video of a man pushing a red or pink bicycle near the creek. Police did not say if the man was a student or not.

The killing has rocked the campus, which hadn’t experienced a murder in nearly 50 years. The university has hosted candlelight vigils this week and UT President Greg Fenves called the killing “an attack on our entire family.”

The school has also announced they are increasing university police patrols in addition to bringing in 20 state troopers to assist in campus security. The murder has also prompted students to circulate a petition calling for the installation of more emergency call boxes or blue light phones, reports Fox 7.

The Austin police and the Texas Department of Public Safety are heading the investigation.

Get Our Newsletters
Campus Safety Online Summit Promo Campus Safety HQ