Official newspaper of the University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of the University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of the University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

All content by Megan Menchaca
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The Daily Texan’s future remains strong even amid pandemic

December 7, 2020

There has never been another semester like fall 2020 for The Daily Texan. For the first time in its 120-year history, the staff had to create a print paper virtually. We temporarily stopped printing...

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A statement from The Daily Texan’s managing editor

December 2, 2020

The Daily Texan strives every day to uphold its mission of providing the community with truthful and factual information and accurately representing the views of our sources in each story we publish. However,...

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Editor’s note: The Daily Texan will produce weekly print paper, work remotely in fall 2020

August 19, 2020

For the first time in more than a century, The Daily Texan will not be making a daily print paper every weekday in the fall. Instead, due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the paper’s...

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Management response to Demands for Reforms in The Daily Texan Newsroom

August 3, 2020

From The Daily Texan’s fall and summer 2020 management team: Earlier this afternoon, The Daily Texan’s Diversity and Inclusion Board released a statement calling for the Texan and its parent...

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Hey Curious Campus, how do you say goodbye?

May 8, 2020

After being rejected from The Daily Texan five times my freshman year, I wasn’t sure I was cut out to be a journalist.  I vividly remember calling my mom, in tears, and promising that I would...

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What questions do you have about coronavirus concerns?

March 11, 2020

As coronavirus cases continue to increase in Texas, we’re reporting on how UT-Austin and local officials are planning to respond. We want to hear about how concerns over coronavirus are affecting...

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Highlights from UT-Austin’s forum on sexual misconduct policies

January 28, 2020

Editor’s Note: Since the forum was meant to be a safe space, any mandatory reporting requirements by SB 212 were suspended. Student names have been anonymized in this transcript. Questions and answers...

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What happens after I apply to the University?

April 30, 2019

UT’s admissions process is complicated. The University’s admissions process — especially for athletes on scholarship —  came under national scrutiny on March 12 after now-fired...

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Former UT tennis coach Michael Center plans to plead guilty in college admissions case

April 8, 2019

Former UT men’s tennis coach Michael Center will plead guilty by April 30 to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. As...

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Father of University of Texas student involved in college admissions scandal removed from firm

March 28, 2019

Editor’s note: A source in this story agreed to speak to The Texan on terms of anonymity. This story has been updated to reflect clarifications from the anonymous source regarding when...

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U.S. Department of Education launches investigation into University of Texas admissions practices

March 26, 2019

The U.S. Department of Education is investigating admissions practices at the eight universities involved in the federal admissions scandal, including UT. Federal education investigators told the eight...

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Introducing Curious Capitol: Do you have questions about the Texas Legislature? We’ll find answers

February 1, 2019

Is there something you’d like to learn about the Texas Legislature? An issue or lawmaker you’d like The Daily Texan to cover? Or even just a more in-depth look at a bill that was recently introduced? I’m...

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LGBTQ advocacy organizations support former SRD resident

December 10, 2018

After Scottish Rite Dormitory restricted her guest policies on Nov. 14, Kaj Baker found support through GLAAD, the world’s largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization. Baker, a communication sciences...

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Reports of robberies decrease in West Campus, Riverside

December 7, 2018

Robberies have decreased in West Campus and Riverside this fall semester compared to last fall, according to the Austin Police Department Crime Viewer. Since Aug. 29, there have been zero reported robberies...

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Sexual assault reported at Kinsolving Dormitory

December 5, 2018

A UT student reported a sexual assault to the University of Texas Police Department at 2 a.m. on Wednesday, according to a campus-wide safety alert sent out this morning. The student said the reported...

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Water main break causes road closure

December 4, 2018

Water spewed more than 30 feet high outside the Student Services Building on Tuesday morning after a water main break, according to the University of Texas Police Department. Laurie Lentz, Financial...

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Lighting improvements needed for West Campus, according to study

December 4, 2018

West Campus needs at least $1.7 million worth of lighting upgrades, according to a study presented by the Austin Transportation Department on Monday. In May 2017, after months of lobbying by campus...

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Austin leads Texas in reported hate crimes in 2017

November 28, 2018

Austin led Texas in reported hate crimes in 2017, according to the FBI Hate Crime Statistics report. According to the report, Austin had 18 hate crimes — 10 of which were motivated by race,...

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Off-campus dorm increases restrictions on LGBTQ student

November 27, 2018

Kaj Baker used to spend nights studying in Scottish Rite Dormitory with her girlfriend. But now, her girlfriend is no longer allowed in the dorm, as first reported by Texas Student Television. After...

West Campus burglaries increase during 2018 fall semester

November 26, 2018

There have been 22 more burglaries in the West Campus area during this fall semester compared to last fall, according to the Austin Police Department crime viewer. There have been 69 burglaries...

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Hey, Curious Campus: What are some of the best coffee shops in Austin?

November 26, 2018

Coffee shops aren’t only famous for their calm environments that are perfect for studying; they also offer the delicious caffeinated drinks that fuel all college students. But with dozens of coffee...

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UT-Austin finishes $2.4 million upgrade to building security

November 20, 2018

The University completed nearly $2.4 million in safety and security upgrades to all on-campus buildings at the end of October. The Department of Public Safety provided security recommendations to the...

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Call boxes not used to report on-campus emergency in five years

November 14, 2018

In the past five years, none of the yellow emergency call boxes have been used to report an emergency on campus. According to data provided by UT Police Department, UTPD officers responded to 1,832...

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UT student reports robbery on San Antonio Street

November 9, 2018

The Austin Police Department responded at 9:20 p.m to two UT students who reported a robbery, according to a campus-wide alert. One of the two suspects cut one of the students with the knife at the...

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Hey, Curious Campus: What are some of the best places to study on campus?

November 8, 2018

While the midterm elections have come and gone, the stress of midterm exams has just begun. But as popular places like the Perry-Castañeda Library and the Student Activity Center begin to fill...

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Naloxone kits on UT-Austin campus going unused

October 31, 2018

The University provided two doses of Narcan nasal spray, an opioid overdose treatment, to each of the 24-hour desks at residence halls on campus in 2016. But since then, none of the on-campus kits have...

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Capitol offices evacuated due to suspicious package

October 30, 2018

State Rep. Matt Schaefer said in a tweet that offices in the Texas State Capitol complex have been evacuated due to a suspicious package. “DPS has evacuated my staff in our Capitol office along...

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UT student reports groping incident on Guadalupe Street

October 30, 2018

According to a campus-wide safety alert, a UT student reported a groping incident to UTPD at 11:30 p.m. on Monday. The student said a man groped over her clothes while she was walking through a vacant...

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‘Rampant’ moped thefts occurring in West Campus

October 30, 2018

After a string of moped thefts in West Campus this year, the Austin Police Department is urging students to protect their mopeds. Forty moped thefts have occurred in West Campus and the surrounding...

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Boil water notice lifted Sunday

October 29, 2018

Austin Water lifted the city’s boil water notice Sunday afternoon after one week. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality tested the water and confirmed it was safe for Austin residents...

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Austin Water lifts boil water notice

October 28, 2018

The boil water notice for Austin has been lifted, Austin Water announced Sunday. Testing done by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality confirmed the water is now safe for consumption. Austin...

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Hey, Curious Campus: It’s election season. Who are the local candidates on the ballot?

October 28, 2018

From the race for U.S Senate to the race for Texas governor, statewide elections have captured the attention of people around Texas for months. But along with the races at the top of the ballot, dozens...

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Rumors of worsening water quality are false, city officials say

October 26, 2018

A widely shared image of claims the water quality in Austin is going to get worse is false. The uncropped image features messages from someone named Alex claiming to work for “municipal districts”...

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What happens if I get a citation for underage drinking?

October 26, 2018

Students cited for underage drinking violations can face a wide range of penalties at both the University and state level, but there are also multiple resources available to them to manage these penalties. If...

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UTPD introduces new public safety officers

October 23, 2018

Along with officers wearing blue, black and white, the UT Police Department now has 11 officers patrolling campus in fluorescent yellow uniforms. UTPD previously had more than 50 security guards...

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Have questions about Austin’s citywide boil water notice? We have answers.

October 22, 2018

A citywide boil water notice has been issued for the first time in the history of the Austin water utility. Austin Water is advising customers to boil water for three minutes before consuming it. Why...

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Austin makes boil notice mandatory after contamination exceeds state standards

October 22, 2018

Update (Thursday 1:56 p.m.):  Mayor Steve Adler has issued a disaster declaration for the City of Austin for the next seven days. This follows similar recent declarations by the City’s...

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Dozens of students cite conscience in request for meningococcal vaccination exemptions

October 19, 2018

Out of 78 total students at UT exempt from the meningococcal vaccination for the 2018–19 school year, 68 were exempt for reasons of conscience. According to data obtained by The Daily Texan through...

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Hey, Curious Campus: Early voting starts Monday. What do I need to know?

October 19, 2018

For months, candidates have been campaigning in Texas for dozens of statewide and local positions. The first ballots for all of these positions, from the U.S Senate seat to railroad commissioner, will...

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Heavy rain leads to road, waterway closures in Austin

October 16, 2018

Gov. Greg Abbott issued a state disaster declaration Tuesday evening for Travis County and 17 other counties because of heavy rainfall, which also caused several minor road closures and all Austin waterways. Barton...

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UTPD hosts rape agression defense class for women

October 16, 2018

Nearly 20 women shouted “Stay back!” and practiced defending themselves against potential assailants in the UT Police Department training room Monday evening. The women were participating...

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Hey, Curious Campus: Why is voter turnout among young people so low in midterm elections?

October 16, 2018

Despite the significant role in the role of government in lives of young people, they often have the lowest voter turnout in elections nationwide. Less than 20 percent of 18 to 29-year olds cast ballots...

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Student reports assault on Guadalupe Street

October 16, 2018

According to a campus-wide safety alert, Austin Police responded at 9:00 p.m to a student who reported an aggravated assault on Guadalupe Street. The student said he was threatened by a transient, who...

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University of Texas police investigate, clear terrorist threat against government professor

October 12, 2018

On the first day of class, government professor David Prindle was reported for making a terrorist threat.  “Someone quoted me as having said, ‘I’m going to pull out a gun and...

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Students come together at ‘Stand with Survivors’ rally in response to YCT demonstration supporting Kavanaugh

October 10, 2018

Even as rain began to pour, dozens of people linked their arms together and chanted “We believe survivors” and “Survivors united will never be divided” Tuesday afternoon on...

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UT students gather at ‘Stand with Survivors’ rally in response to YCT demonstration

October 9, 2018

With arms linked and tears in their eyes, dozens of people continued their chants of “We believe survivors” and “Survivors united will never be divided” Tuesday afternoon on Speedway. During...

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Reports of violent, property crime increase at UT-Austin

October 5, 2018

Violent crime and property crime on campus increased last year, according to data released last week by the FBI. Compared to 13 violent crimes in 2016, the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report shows 15...

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Hey, Curious Campus: It’s election season. How do I register to vote?

October 4, 2018

This November, Texans will not only be casting their ballot for U.S. Senator, but they will also be voting for governor, attorney general, mayor and several state and district judges. But before heading...

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Education experts emphasize higher education funding at Texas Tribune Festival

September 28, 2018

Lack of financial aid for university students, support for marginalized students and education policy dominated the conversations at two Texas Tribune Festival panels on higher education. Presidents...

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‘I believe in our country’: John Kerry opens Texas Tribune Festival with discussion on US democracy

September 28, 2018

Former Secretary of State John Kerry said although the United States has proven it can withstand anything, the current state of the country is in deep trouble. Kerry, the opening speaker for the Texas...

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UT-Austin’s four-year graduation rate reaches all-time high, despite failing 2012 goal

September 28, 2018

Despite still falling short of their goal set in 2012, the University’s four-year graduation rate has reached an all-time high, officials announced on Thursday. The class of 2018 set a record...

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Student Government hosts ‘Emergency Medicine Week’

September 25, 2018

To raise awareness of emergency medical resources and advocate for more life-saving measures on campus, the Student Government Safety Agency is hosting its first Emergency Medicine Week. Jason Taper,...

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Hey, Curious Campus: Why are there so many scooters on campus sidewalks? Isn’t that dangerous?

September 21, 2018

In April, Bird and LimeBike scooters first came in Austin. There are now more than 3,200 dockless scooters licensed for commercial use in the city. And as the number of scooters and riders on campus...

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APD or UTPD: Who’s in charge of policing West Campus?

September 19, 2018

Students living in West Campus often see two different police departments patrolling the area — the Austin Police Department and the University of Texas Police Department. But the roles of the these...

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UTPD changes emergency communications after 2017 stabbing

September 18, 2018

Like many students, public relations junior Elizabeth Boone first heard about the on-campus stabbing on May 1, 2017, through the group messaging app GroupMe — not from the police. “There...

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Hey, Curious Campus: Why does UT-Austin have all this money for athletics but not academics?

September 14, 2018

You may have heard about the $7.5 million renovation to the football locker rooms that was unveiled in August 2017. Or the $175 million plan to renovate the south end zone of DKR that was announced in...

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University of Texas Police clarifies emergency notification protocols following reports of stabbing near campus

September 12, 2018

After facing criticism from students for not sending out a University-wide text alert after reports of a stabbing near campus, UTPD Chief David Carter clarified UTPD’s emergency notification protocols...

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Meechaiel Criner’s lawyers requesting new trial amid allegations of jury misconduct

September 11, 2018

Update (9:26 p.m.): Criner’s attorneys said they discovered new evidence from Criner’s laptop after the verdict which shows Criner is not guilty, according to KXAN. His attorneys also said...

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UT Police clarifies why alert text wasn’t sent following reports of stabbing near campus Monday

September 11, 2018

After facing criticism from students for not sending out a University-wide text alert after reports of a stabbing near campus, UTPD Chief David Carter clarified UTPD’s emergency notification...

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UT Austin Police helps students with finding lost items

September 11, 2018

Only a few days after her first day of college, journalism freshman Trinady Joslin misplaced her keys in her dorm.  Joslin eventually found her keys under her bed a week later but only after she...

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UT Police responds to stabbing near Duren Dormitory

September 11, 2018

Update (12:04 a.m.): According to a new tweet by UTPD, the suspect was a white male. He has been detained by Austin Police. The black male was involved in the fight but did not have a knife. He was...

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‘I can no longer just do nothing’: Santa Fe High School student activist adjusts to life at UT

September 6, 2018

Like many students, undeclared freshman Kennedy Rodriguez spent her senior year enrolled in dual credit classes in a community college before she attended UT. Because of this, Rodriguez attended...

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Hey, Curious Campus: What happened to the Starbucks inside DKR?

September 5, 2018

From Bevo Boulevard to Longhorn City Limits, thousands of UT football fans will clearly see some changes in the game day experience when they head to Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium this weekend. But...

UT Financial Aid Office warns student about email scam

September 5, 2018

Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional comment from the University. The University Financial Aid Office sent out a tweet on Sept. 4 warning students about an email scam targeting...

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TABC stepping up fake ID inspections around UT Austin, West Campus establishments

September 5, 2018

Editor’s note: Some last names have been omitted to protect the identity of the source.  The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has begun its annual crackdown on underage drinking. Chris...

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Federal judge denies request from Texas to end DACA program

September 4, 2018

A federal judge ruled on Friday against a case that would have stopped recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program from renewing their enrollment. In his ruling, U.S. District Judge...

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Lawsuit over Title IX discrimination against UT is dismissed

August 31, 2018

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include a response from the University. The lawsuit filed by an unnamed male student accusing the University of discriminating against male students...

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Revolutionary Student Front will no longer be active organization at UT Austin

August 31, 2018

The Revolutionary Student Front, a non-registered anti-fascist organization, will no longer be active on UT’s campus, according to an article shared by RSF on Facebook. According to the article,...

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‘The Busiest time’: UT Police Department prepares for thousands of incoming students

August 29, 2018

As the fall semester begins, the UT Police Department has begun adjusting to thousands of students moving back to campus and into the surrounding apartment complexes. After members of UTPD spent the...

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Introducing Curious Campus: You have questions about UT-Austin and the 40 Acres? We have answers.

August 28, 2018

What question about UT have you always wanted answered? What issues are the most important to you? What story have you wished the Daily Texan would write about? I’m Megan Menchaca, the Texan’s...

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Lawsuit against University House to move to trial

August 27, 2018

After Plan II sophomore Rylan Maksoud found out his lease with a West Campus apartment complex had been terminated in January, he vowed to pursue every legal avenue open to him. But first, Maksoud created...

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Meechaiel Criner found guilty of Haruka Weiser’s death

July 24, 2018

A Travis County jury found Meechaiel Criner guilty of capital murder in the April 2016 death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser, sentencing him to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 40 years. After...

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Family, attorneys respond to guilty verdict in Haruka Weiser case

July 20, 2018

Multiple people cried and hugged each other outside of a Travis County courtroom on Friday after a jury found Meechaiel Criner guilty of capital murder in the April 2016 death of dance freshman Haruka...

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Meechaiel Criner found guilty of Haruka Weiser’s death

July 20, 2018

2:13 p.m. update: A Travis County jury found Meechaiel Criner guilty of capital murder in the April 2016 death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser, sentencing him to an automatic life sentence with the possibility...

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Attorneys finish closing arguments in Criner trial, still no verdict

July 20, 2018

The jury has still not reached a verdict in the trial of Meechaiel Criner, indicted on capital murder charges in connection to the April 2016 death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. After nearly five...

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Defendant Meechaiel Criner denies murdering Haruka Weiser during trial

July 19, 2018

Meechaiel Criner testified Wednesday that he had nothing to do with the homicide of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. Criner said that while he had never seen Weiser before, he thought he would be found...

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Witnesses discuss remaining DNA evidence in Criner trial

July 18, 2018

Although most of the DNA evidence in the case against Meechaiel Criner was previously thrown out by the judge, the prosecution spent Tuesday discussing the remaining physical evidence. Criner, a 20-year-old...

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Day six of Criner trial focuses on eyeglasses found at crime scene

July 16, 2018

Attorneys in the trial of Meechaiel Criner, who was indicted on capital murder charges in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser, focused Monday on a single pair of eyeglasses and the...

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Attorneys focus on scene of fire in third full day of Criner trial

July 13, 2018

Witnesses in the trial of Meechaiel Criner testified Friday about the abandoned building where evidence connected to both Haruka Weiser and Meechaiel Criner was found. In the third day of testimony,...

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Attorneys question police officers, UT employees in second full day of Criner trial

July 13, 2018

The trial continued Thursday for Meechaiel Criner, the 20-year-old indicted on capital murder in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. After Weiser’s father and friends testified...

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Trial for Meechaiel Criner begins

July 12, 2018

The trial began Wednesday for Meechaiel Criner, the 20-year-old indicted on capital murder in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. After swearing in the jury, assistant district...

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Jury selected for Criner trial

July 11, 2018

The remaining members of the jury were chosen Tuesday for the trial of Meechaiel Criner, the 20-year-old indicted on capital murder charges in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. Over...

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Nine selected to serve on jury for Criner trial

July 10, 2018

Jury selection began Monday for the trial of Meechaiel Criner, the 20-year-old indicted in connection with the the capital murder of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. More than 70 people appeared before...

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Timeline: Haruka Weiser murder case

July 10, 2018

The following timeline is the series of events leading up to the trial of Meechaiel Criner, according to his arrest affidavit and reporting from KXAN, KVUE, the Austin American-Statesman and The Daily...

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Jury selection begins in preparation for Criner trial

July 10, 2018

Jury selection began Monday in preparation for the trial of Meechaiel Criner, the 20-year-old indicted on capital murder charges in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. More than...

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Preview: Meechaiel Criner trial

July 8, 2018

The trial of Meechaiel Criner, the man indicted on capital murder charges in connection with the death of dance freshman Haruka Weiser, will begin on July 9. Last month, presiding Judge David Wahlberg...

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The Drag Race: Businesses shift gears to stay open on Guad

June 26, 2018

Students walking along Guadalupe Street can expect to see changes to the shopping strip every year. This year, the closing of Guad-mainstay Ruby’s BBQ and the recent opening of Rise, a donut and...

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Judge dismisses DNA evidence in Haruka Weiser murder case

June 20, 2018

Judge David Wahlberg decided on Wednesday not to admit the majority of the DNA evidence into the murder trial of UT dance freshman Haruka Weiser. On the third day of the pre-trial hearing, Wahlberg...

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Experts continue discussion of DNA testing in Haruka Weiser murder case

June 20, 2018

Attorneys continued their discussion of the role DNA testing plays in the murder case of dance freshman Haruka Weiser during a pre-trial hearing on Tuesday. The judge has still not ruled on whether the...

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Experts discuss DNA testing in Haruka Weiser murder case

June 19, 2018

During a pre-trial hearing on Monday, attorneys discussed DNA testing in the murder case of dance freshman Haruka Weiser. In the 167th District Court of Judge David Wahlberg, lawyers for the prosecution...

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Texas Tech student dies during UT study abroad program

June 17, 2018

Elmer Arrieta, a 27-year-old graduate student studying architecture at Texas Tech University, died while participating in a UT study abroad program in Irkutsk, Russia, according to an email sent to the...

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Austin City Council approves ‘Freedom City’ policies

June 17, 2018

The Austin City Council voted unanimously Thursday to approve two “Freedom City” policies, which target racial disparities in arrests and citations issued by the Austin Police Department. After...

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U.S. shortens length of some Chinese student visas

June 17, 2018

In an effort to protect intellectual property theft, the U.S. Department of State has begun to shorten visa lengths for some Chinese graduate students. Under the new policy, if Chinese graduate students...

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Woman accused of Subway robberies plans to plead not guilty

June 13, 2018

The woman who was arrested in February in connection with multiple Subway robberies in West Campus appeared in Travis County Court on Tuesday and indicated that she plans to enter a plea of not guilty. According...

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UT develops automatic tornado warning alert system

May 3, 2018

With frequent alerts about crime and serious weather, the University has never sent automatic messages about tornado warnings — until now. The Office of Campus Safety, Office of Emergency Preparedness...

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New UT-Austin minor offers students a chance to pursue Medieval Studies

April 20, 2018

Students looking at next year’s course catalog for the College of Liberal Arts may be surprised to find a new undergraduate minor on the list — Medieval Studies. This fall, the new Medieval...

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Students celebrate the legacy of Selena Quintanilla at Flor Festival

April 19, 2018

In front of a crowd of dozens, Justin Morris, a radio-television-film freshman, lip-synced and danced to the signature Congo sounds and electronic guitar riffs of Selena Quintanilla-Pérez’s...

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Gift a Page event raises funds for children’s literacy, girls’ education

April 12, 2018

At the second ‘Gift a Page’ event on West Mall on Wednesday, the UT chapter of Room to Read sold decorated pages of children’s books to raise funds for children’s literacy and girls’...

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New organization Pen Pal Swap targets college readiness in low income students

April 6, 2018

Two UT students have started a pen pal program to help economically disadvantaged public school students, which, according to the Texas Education Agency, makes up more than half of all public school students...