A school in New York City’s Bronx borough went into lockdown Wednesday morning after a stabbing that left one 15-year-old student dead and another student, 16, critically injured, in what police say was the culmination of weeks of dispute.
According to the New York Times, the attack occurred in a building that houses two schools: the elementary school P.S. 67 and the Urban Assembly School for Wildlife Conservation high school. The killing is the first inside a city school building in more than two decades, the report notes.
The 15-year-old who died was identified as Matthew McCree, who suffered a fatal wound to the chest, police reported. The other victim, who remains unidentified, was stabbed in the arm and the torso. Police arrested 18-year-old Abel Cedeno, another student at Wildlife Conservation, and charged him late Wednesday with murder and attempted murder.
Cedeno, according to Chief of Detectives Robert K. Boyce, handed over a switchblade to the school counselor after the stabbing before taking himself to an administrator’s office, where he waited for police to arrive.
Kevin Sampson, a dean at the school, said in an interview that the deadly encounter stemmed from “bullying.”
“Two of my students got stabbed and one of them died,” Sampson said, according to the report. “It was about what it’s always about—bullying.”
At a Wednesday-afternoon news conference, Boyce only said that it appeared that the three students had been involved in a dispute that had been ongoing over the first weeks of the school year before it ultimately escalated.
The stabbing has left concerned parents shocked and wondering why metal detectors were not present in the schools. According to the Times, some 88 of the city’s 1,300 school buildings have metal detectors that are used either full time or part time.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke at a news conference with police and school officials, calling the attack and the resulting death unacceptable.
“It’s unacceptable to ever lose a child to violence inside a school building,” he said. “All of us are feeling this tragedy very personally.”
Read more at the New York Times.