Revenge of the Nerds!

Austin police arrested former UC Berkeley and UT engineering professor Gary Wise yesterday, on charges of deadly conduct and stalking.

It seems like the once-tenured professor [allegedly] spent the past six years harassing his former colleagues, beginning with a few relatively innocuous obscene phone calls and escalating all the way to last Friday, when he went off on a wild shooting rampage in North and Central Austin. Luckily, no one was hurt, but Wise did managed to put several substantial holes in the houses of his former bosses as well further disgrace the already sad-looking chemical and petroleum engineering building on campus. Actually, we have no idea what the chemical and petroleum engineering building looks like, but we find most science buildings tend to be boxy concrete monstrosities. Shame on you, public university funding fascists!

What Austinist finds disturbing, in a Made-for-Lifetime-TV-Movie kind of way, is that police had already been notified of Wise's stalkerific tendencies way back in 2000, but failed to take any action. One of his targets, College of Engineering Dean Ben Streetman, eventually took matters into his own hands and installed video surveillance equipment. Which, last Friday, caught the drive-by shooting on tape. Gotcha!

Back in the day, Wise was a fairly prolific researcher, co-authoring a dozen unreadable journal publications on various obtuse statistics problems and even publishing a book entitled Counterexamples in Probability and Real Analysis. We don't know what that entails, but it sure sounds suspiciously subversive. Or just really nerdy.

Contact the author of this article or email tips@austinist.com with further questions, comments or tips.

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