The University of Texas freshman who was found murdered on campus last week, was sexually assaulted before being strangled to death, sources say.
Law enforcement officials, who aren’t authorized to speak publicly about the investigation, told the Austin American-Statesman that 18-year-old Haruka Weiser was sexually assaulted shortly before her death on Sunday, April 3.
Homeless teen Meechaeiel Khalil Criner, 17, was seen stalking the UT student from a dance class that night and then emerging from the creek area about two hours later with Weiser’s bike and duffel bag.
The officials did not reveal any more details about the assault. Forensics teams obtained a DNA sample on Weiser’s body which they are using to determine whether Criner was involved in any other unsolved crimes.
Weiser was reported missing the following morning by one of her roommates, and her body was discovered Tuesday in a creek near the football stadium.
Exactly how Weiser died is still under investigation, pending an autopsy. But investigators said there were ‘obvious signs of trauma’ on her body.
Criner was arrested last Thursday, a few days after police found him torching what appeared to be Weiser’s possessions in an abandoned building. Criner currently faces a murder charge and is being held on $1 million bail.
As police confirmed his arrest last week, a chilling interview Criner gave to his high school newspaper emerged in which he claimed he wanted people to remember his name.
In the December 2014 interview, Criner said that he was mocked for his African accent and had to leave his alcoholic mother to go and live with his grandmother while he was living in Texarkana, roughly 375 miles away from Austin.
Weiser, 18, from Portland, Oregon, was a first year theater and dance student at the university and was reported missing on Monday morning by fellow roommates.
An affidavit released by police Friday revealed that Weiser had called friend Sylvia Feghali at 9.30pm and advised she was on the way home from her class at the F Loren Winship Drama Building located on East 23rd Street and San Jacinto blvd.
Texas PD received a call the following morning from her friend Sylvia to say she hadn’t come home.
She had been wearing a long sleeve black turtle neck shirt, black stretch pants and brown Doc Martin shoes.
She had a blue duffle bag with a Mac Book computer, iPhone 6 and study materials for school.
Via The Daily Mail