UCSB police have a “person of interest” in investigating a threatening e-mail received by a university professor last week.
Arash Shamsian, a 27-year-old former UCSB student, is being sought after by police. According to an alert posted on its website Friday afternoon, campus police don’t believe Shamsian is in the Santa Barbara area, and his last known address is in Mexico. Police spokesman Matt Bowman didn’t immediately return phone calls Monday, but an update on the campus police information line indicated detectives investigating the case are actively seeking an arrest warrant and name Shamsian as a suspect in the case rather than a person of interest.
UCSB students, faculty and staff were notified via e-mail by Vice Chancellor Donna Carpenter Thursday evening about the threatening e-mail and encouraged to report any suspicious activity in and around the chemistry building. “We are notifying you so that you may exercise care and partner with us in keeping our community safe,” Carpenter said in her e-mail.
It is not known what information was contained in the threat to the professor, but Carpenter’s e-mail indicated the threat was specific to the professor.
Anyone who sees Shamsian on UCSB property or has any potential information regarding the e-mail should call UCSB police at (805) 893-3446 or by calling 911.