University of Arizona Grad Student Accused of Killing Professor

According to his lawyer, the alleged murderer, who was once a graduate student at the University of Arizona, was going through a psychotic episode at the time of the shooting incident on campus two years ago.

During the closing arguments, prosecutors claimed that the murder of Thomas Meixner, who was shot outside his workplace and later pronounced dead at a Tucson hospital, was a result of premeditation.

Dervish fired eleven shots at Meixner, using up all the rounds in a 9 mm revolver. The lecturer was hit by nine out of the eleven rounds. Dervish attempted to flee Arizona following the shooting.

After Meixner died, Dervish, who is 48 years old, was charged with seven criminal offenses, including first-degree murder.

Leo Masursky, the defense attorney for Dervish, contended that his client should be considered guilty of second-degree murder because the crime was not premeditated. However, he should be declared insane.

Prosecutors in Pima County claim that Dervish was fully conscious of his actions and had premeditated them.

Meixner was an expert in addressing water challenges in arid regions and served as dean of the university’s hydrology and atmospheric sciences department.

Dervish was enrolled in the master’s degree program in atmospheric sciences offered by the Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences.

Reportedly, Dervish faced difficulties with his teachers following a low grade in January 2022, which ultimately resulted in his expulsion from the school.

According to a criminal complaint, in February 2022, university workers received a flier with a picture of Dervish. The poster stated that if Dervish ever entered the John W. Harshbarger Building, which houses the hydrology department, they should immediately call 911.

Dervish had repeatedly made threats and harassed employees at Harshbarger.

Witnesses reported that Dervish showed up outside Meixner’s office on the afternoon of October 5, 2022. He was wearing a surgical mask and a baseball hat and proceeded to shoot at the professor.