Knife-Wielding Pa. Student Wounds At Least 22 in Stabbing Spree
At least 22 people were injured in today's stabbing spree.
April 9, 2014— -- A student went on a five-minute stabbing spree at a Pennsylvania high school this morning, wounding at least 22 people and leaving two critically injured and fighting for their lives.
Alex Hribal, a 16-year-old sophomore at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, Pa., used two 8-to-10 inch "kitchen-type" "straight" knives in the attack, which started shortly after 7 a.m., police said.
Authorities said Hribal would be charged as an adult with four counts of attempted criminal homicide, 21 counts of aggravated assault and one count of possession of weapons on school property. He was being held without bail in a juvenile detention center in Westmoreland County.
After the spree began, the school resource officer stationed at the school, William "Buzz" Yakshe, used his radio to alert police, telling them of a critical incident unfolding at the school, according to Murrysville Police Chief Thomas Seefeld.
"When we got there we saw a hallway in chaos, as you can imagine," Seefeld said at a press conference this afternoon. "There was a lot of evidence of blood on the floors and in the hallway, we had students running about, trying to get out of the area."
Franklin Assistant Principal Sam King tackled the suspect during the attack, and was joined by Principal Joan Mellon in subduing him, Seefeld said.
Yakshe handcuffed the boy as police arrived at the school. Seefeld said the teen was treated for a minor hand wound.
Nate Moore, 15, was stabbed during the rampage and said he had to be treated with 15 stitches.
"It was really fast. It felt like he hit me with a wet rag because I felt the blood splash on my face. It spurted up on my forehead," Moore told the AP.
At least 20 people were injured after the stabbings at the start of the school day, Westmoreland County emergency management spokesman Dan Stevens said.
The motive for the rampage remains under investigation. Seefeld said they were not aware of any warning signs from the suspect, a sophomore at the school.
At least four people with injuries emergency management officials described as "serious" were flown to area hospitals for treatment. Others were not actually stabbed, he said, and some of their injuries included cuts and scrapes.
Among the stabbing victims was a security guard stabbed in the stomach, the police chief said.
Dr. Louis Alarcon, who is part of an operating team at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Children's Hospital, said one victim, a 17-year-old boy, had a stab wound to the chest that barely missed his aorta.
Alarcon said doctors were optimistic the teen will survive.
At Forbes Hospital, Dr. Mark Rubino said his team treated eight victims, three of whom he said had severe injuries.
"We were ready to handle what came in the door," Rubino said, adding that, at one point, 20 surgeons were in the emergency room.
Rubino said the injuries spanned from "relatively superficial wounds" to "severe injuries to abdominal injuries." He said almost all of the stab wounds appeared to follow a pattern and were inflicted on the victims' lower abdomens.
The breakdown of injured and whether they were students or staff was not immediately known, but Forbes and Allegheny General Hospital initially reported nine patients ranging in age from 15 to 60.
A student, who said he knows the person believed to be the alleged stabber, said the teen -- described as skinny -- seemed like a "pretty normal kid."