Suspected ‘incel’ accused of threatening mass shooting at University of Arizona

Oct 27, 2023, 10:00 AM

A Tucson man was arrested Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2023, for allegedly threatening to commit a mass shoo...

A Tucson man was arrested Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2023, for allegedly threatening to commit a mass shooting at the University of Arizona. (Facebook File Photo/University of Arizona)

(Facebook File Photo/University of Arizona)

PHOENIX — A Tucson man was arrested Wednesday for allegedly threatening to commit a mass shooting at the University of Arizona, authorities said.

Michael Lee, 27, is accused of making the threat in a group chat on Snapchat, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona said in a press release.

Lee, who is not a student at the Tucson school, allegedly expressed his intention to get revenge on “chads” and “stacies,” terms prosecutors say are commonly used by self-described involuntary celibates, aka “incels.”

According to a federal complaint warrant, Lee posted, “im gonna do it guys, my mind is made up and there’s nothing u can do or say to stop me.”

What is an incel?

According to the Anti-Defamation League, incels are “men who blame women and society for their lack of romantic success.”

The incel subculture has been implicated in multiple mass shootings in recent years, including a 2020 incident at the Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale.

Federal prosecutors have 30 days from the arrest date to indict Lee.

The FBI and University of Arizona Police Department conducted the investigation as part of the FBI’s Southern Arizona Violent Crime and Gang Task Force.

UArizona teacher killed on campus a year ago

This week’s arrest comes one year after an expelled University of Arizona graduate student allegedly shot and killed a professor on campus.

Murad Dervish was charged with first-degree murder after Thomas Meixner, who headed the school’s Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, was killed Oct. 5, 2022.

An independent report on the slaying released earlier this year by security consulting firm PAX Group found multiple missed opportunities to investigate and possibly arrest Dervish before the shooting.

“There were systemic issues across our university that should have been identified and corrected,” UArizona President Dr. Robert Robbins said during a news conference after the report came out in March. “I’m angry at myself that I did not do more to prevent this tragedy.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Suspected ‘incel’ accused of threatening mass shooting at University of Arizona