Preliminary hearing held for suspect Meechaiel Criner

Caleb Wong

A preliminary hearing for suspect Meechaiel Criner was scheduled Friday morning at the Travis County Criminal Court.

Criner, who was charged with the murder of UT student Haruka Weiser, did not appear in the courtroom because he has not been indicted yet, according to the Austin American-Statesman. Criner’s lawyer, Ariel Payan, said his client is undergoing psychological evaluations and gathering other evidence to determine whether he is competent to stand trial, according to the Statesman.

“It is a going to be a really long process, I think, with this case,” Payan said, according to the Statesman. “But hopefully we will be getting some information soon.”

Prosecutors have 90 days to levy formal charges against Criner following his April 8 arrest, according to the Statesman.

The hearing comes about two weeks after the University found Weiser’s body on campus at Waller Creek. The University has increased patrols on campus with the assistance of the Austin Police Department and the Department of Public Safety.