The school year is winding down. Students should be thinking about prom, graduation, and their summer vacations, really anything but the devastation that happened in Pennsylvania. Another school violence tragedy happened Wednesday morning when a 16-year-old student wounded 21 people in a stabbing rampage.
The student was sneaking through hallways, attacking fellow students by slashing them in the torso, arm, and face. “The juvenile went down a hallway and was flashing two knives around,” Thomas Seefeld, the police chief of Murrysville, Pa. reported. The whole thing happened so fast that initially many students and faculty didn’t even know what was going on.
Eventually someone pulled the fire alarm allowing the building to be evacuated. The stabber, a Franklin Regional High School sophomore whose name has not been released, was tackled by the assistant vice principal. With the help of a security guard, the two managed to capture the teen who is now in the custody of Murrysville Police.
Victims were sent to local hospitals. Four people sustained such severe, life-threatening injuries that they had to be transported by medical helicopters. According to hospital officials, most of the victims were just teenagers, ages 14 to 17. Several kids face serious injuries because they were slashed in the abdomen or chest. Nine were reported to be in critical condition. The stabber himself is being treated for wounds sustained to his hands during the attack.
Students describe seeing their friends racing down the halls, streaming pools of blood. “I saw a girl with blood running out of her sleeve,” said Zak Amsler a 17-year-old junior. Zak was about to start the day in his first period class when the attack occurred. “It was pretty mind-blowing,” he said.
Miraculously, it seems that the heroic assistant principal was not stabbed, though he is being examined by doctors. Friends and family have identified him as Sam King. Those who know him are describing Mr. King as a warm, caring guy, “the kind of faculty member that every student in the building could go to,” said junior Cole Seymour.
Pennsylvania’s Governor Tom Corbett asked State Police to aid the local police, and offered whatever resources the community needs The FBI has also sent officials to assist in the investigation. Schools in the district will be closed for the next few days.
The unidentified suspect was described as having a “blank expression” as he roamed the halls. A student who believes he knows the suspect described him as a “pretty normal kid”.
Our hearts go out to everyone in this community, especially the friends and families of the victims. No fatalities have been reported and we hope all of those injured make a full recovery.
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