The University of Texas Police Department continues investigating the homicide of Haruka Weiser, an 18-year-old first-year student whose body was found in Waller Creek after her disappearance was reported. On Thursday night, officers published a video with a possible murder suspect, asking people to identify him.
Haruka was observed last time on Sunday, April 3, when she left the F. Loren Winship Drama building at The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) campus. It was reported that she texted her friend, saying that she was going to their dormitory room. However, she didn’t appear on Sunday night, neither she attended the following morning class.
Her body was found in Waller Creek on Tuesday night, by the University of Texas Police Department (UTPD). After an autopsy was performed, officers determined the manner of death as a homicide, according to a UTPD press release, issued Thursday.
“The suspect in this case is not known at this time. UT students and faculty should exhibit a high degree of awareness and vigilance until this suspect is arrested. Various agencies continue to assist UTPD with extra patrols.” Said the UTPD on Thursday night.
Police has identified a possible suspect and is asking for collaboration
The Capital Area Crime Stoppers, the Governor’s Crime Stoppers Program and the U.S. Marshals office are offering a combined reward of $15,000, for people who provide information about the identification of the murder.
Officers have published a video of the suspect, who was seen walking on the north side of the Longhorns football stadium at 11:30 p.m. on Sunday. According to footage, the man has been described as a “black male, approximately 6 feet tall, with an athletic build”.
In a different video, the suspect appears carrying a bicycle, described as “a red or pink woman’s bicycle”, wearing long sleeve upper clothing and a backpack. Other people were in the same area, so police is asking them to call the APD Homicide Unit at (512) 974-5372.
The UT Austin community is shocked by the murder of Haruka Weiser
UT Austin President Gregory L. Fenves, said Thursday that the murder of Haruka Weiser, a first-year Theatre and Dance Student, was a “terrifying and incomprehensible crime”. He added that brutality against the dancer, was an attack to the entire family of UT Austin, which includes 50,000 students and 14,000 faculty members and staff.
Haruka was a beloved girl among friends, family and classmates, and she was respected by professors for her intelligence, he added in a statement. The 18-year-old girl first met the faculty members two years ago, when she was performing at the National High School Dance Festival. Later, she was recruited by the UT Austin and left her home in Portland.
“Law enforcement is fully engaged to do everything to bring the perpetrator who committed this crime to justice. I ask you to join me in expressing our deepest condolences to Haruka’s parents, family, classmates and friends and to help the university honor her life.” Said Fenves.
Source: The University of Texas at Austin Press Release