Murad Dervish was named as the former student accused of shooting a professor to death at the University of Arizona in Tucson on October 5, 2022.
“Law enforcement authorities have apprehended a suspect in the shooting that occurred today on the University of Arizona main campus,” the University of Arizona wrote in a statement.
“Arizona Department of Public Safety officers apprehended Murad Dervish after a traffic stop near Gila Bend, Arizona, at 5:10 p.m.” The suspect’s full name is Murad Can Dervish, 46. He has previous addresses in Pennsylvania and California.
The Tucson Sentinel identified the slain professor as Thomas Meixner.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Dervish Entered the John W. Harshbarger Building & Shot the Victim, Police Say
The University of Arizona Police Department wrote on Instagram that the university “experienced a shooting today on its main campus in Tucson. At approximately 2 p.m., a person entered the John W. Harshbarger Building and one victim was shot and died.”
The police said that the university was asking “all non-essential faculty, staff and students to leave the Tucson campus or go to their dorms.”
Campus police Chief Paula Balafas said in a news conference that the suspect was wearing a blue baseball cap. One person was shot.
2. Dervish Was a Former Graduate Student Who Was Not Supposed to Be in the Building Where the Shooting Occurred
At 1:59 p.m., police received a call from the Harshbarger Building that a former student was in the building who was not supposed to be there.
The caller wanted the police to escort the suspect out, police said in the news conference.
The University of Arizona Police Department was en route when they received two calls of a shooting. By 2:07 p.m., the suspect had fled the scene, running out the main doors.
The shot victim was transported to the hospital but was pronounced deceased in the emergency room.
KOLD.com reported that Dervish was a former graduate student.
3. The Victim Was a Professor in Hydrology & Atmospheric Science, Police Said
Police confirmed that the shooting victim was a professor.
The suspect used a handgun in the shooting, according to police.
Meixner was a professor in the School of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, the police chief said. According to ABC News, the slain professor is a male.
An old resume page says Dervish had a bachelor’s degree in physics from Pennsylvania State University. He listed computer coding skills on it.
4. Dervish Has a Criminal History in San Diego
Court records in San Diego show that Dervish has a criminal history, although details of it were not immediately available. He also had a civil action for harassment from 2020; it was a restraining order filed by a woman against him, court records say. A woman with the same last name made domestic abuse allegations against him in 2011, court records say.
In a statement posted to Facebook at 7 p.m. on October 5, 2022, the University of Arizona also wrote, “Law enforcement authorities have apprehended a suspect in the shooting that occurred today on the University of Arizona main campus.”
They suggested people check this page for updates.
“All remaining in-person classes, campus activities, events and performances on main campus have been canceled today, Oct. 5,” the university wrote.
5. The Campus Police Chief Called the Death, Which Occurred in an Office, a ‘Tremendously Tragic Event’
The campus police chief called it a tremendously tragic event.
She said that it was still being investigated whether the student knew the professor who was killed, including whether he taught him.
The chief called the shooting an “anomaly” for the campus, which she described as an “island” that is generally safe.
The motive is not clear. She said the professor was shot to death in an office.
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