An 18-year-old student at a Bronx high school was taken into custody Wednesday over the alleged fatal stabbing of one of his fellow students — a 15-year-old boy — with a switchblade. The New York Police Department (NYPD) said another victim — a 16-year-old boy — was also stabbed in the arm and the torso during the attack, and is in critical condition at a nearby hospital.
The incident was said to have taken place in a building at 2024 Mohegan Avenue in the East Tremont section of the Bronx, New York City, at around 10:45 a.m EDT. The building houses PS 67 and the Urban Assembly School for Wildlife Conservation. The students involved in the stabbing incident went to the Urban Assembly for Wildlife Conservation School. The incident was said to have happened in a classroom full of 15 to 20 students in it during the school’s third period, police said, ABC News reported.
The 18-year-old, who allegedly stabbed his fellow classmates has been identified as Abel Cedeno, and the victims were identified as Matthew McCree, 15, and Ariane LaBoy, 16, several reports said.
“At this moment we have one child whose life has been lost and one child who is fighting for his life,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a press conference on Wednesday. “This is a painful, painful tragedy.”
NYPD Chief of Community Affairs Joanne Jaffe said there were no metal detectors at the school. “This is a school that was — it was determined that it did not need metal detectors,” she said, New York Daily News reported.
After the incident, parents of several students in the elementary school — housed in the same building where the incident took place — raised concerns and voiced anger at the lack of metal detectors in the premises and demanded action.
A pen fight prompted Cedeno to attack his classmates, according to a witness, who told the New York Post that one of the victims was throwing pens across the room during class and the accused was hit by a pen.
The witness, Jomarlyn Colon, 16, said Cedeno asked the classmates around who threw the pen at him. That was when McCree, one of the victims, stepped in and said he threw the pen but told Cedeno it was an accident. Cedeno then allegedly pulled a knife out of his pocket and went on the stabbing spree.
Wielding a knife, Cedeno just “went crazy,” said witness Colon. “Everybody just stood back. A few of them were holding Matthew. A few of them were holding towels on the wound. All the kids were crying and…