The USC student accused of stabbing professor Bosco Tjan to death at the Seeley G. Mudd building last week pled not guilty during his arraignment Tuesday.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office charged 28-year-old David Jonathan Brown, a graduate neuroscience student, with first-degree murder, including a special allegation of using a “deadly and dangerous weapon” to kill Tjan. If convicted of these charges, he could face 26 years to life in prison, according to the DA.
Brown was arrested at the scene of the crime Friday evening, and though police have not released a motive for the attack, they said it was driven by a “personal dispute.” Brown worked in Tjan’s lab at USC and had taken a leave of absence for “personal reasons” last year, according to the New York Daily News.
Tjan, who had worked at the University since 2001, was an expert in vision research and served as the co-director of the Dornsife Cognitive Neuroimaging Center. He was honored at a memorial service on campus Monday afternoon.
“Tragically, Bosco died doing what he loved, doing what he believed in — serving his students and building up a new generation of scholars,” President C. L. Max Nikias said. “His achievements are real, his influence enduring.”