An unidentified student went on a stabbing spree at a Pennsylvania high school early Wednesday morning, wounding at least 20 people as the school day was beginning. The attacker is in police custody, according to authorities. The victims have all been moved to various hospitals in the area, nearly half of them in critical condition.
Reuters reported (via Yahoo News) April 9 that an unidentified male student began slashing and stabbing his way through Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, Penn., just before 7:15 a.m. and the start of classes. The lone assailant wielded two knives during the stabbing spree, making his way down halls and into classroom before eventually being tackled and subdued by an assistant principal.
According to ABC News, Murrysville Police chief Thomas Seefeld told reporters that the motivation of the attacker, who is 16 years old, was as yet unknown.
Murrysville Police received and responded to a 911 call at 7:13 a.m. Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett ordered state police in to assist after learning of the incident.
"I was shocked and saddened upon learning of the events that occurred this morning as students arrived at Franklin Regional High School," Corbett said in a statement. "As a parent and grandparent, I can think of nothing more distressing than senseless violence against children."
At least nine of those injured in the Franklin Regional High School mass stabbing were seriously injured and taken to Forbes Regional Hospital in Monroeville, Pa. Hospital spokesman Jesse Miller said during a telephone interview that the victims received at Forbes were all "very serious" injuries and eight were in critical condition, including the lone adult, a school guard, injured during the stabbing spree. One, a ninth victim, was airlifted to another facility for treatment.
Although most incidents of mass violence are results of lone gunmen, mass stabbing and stabbing sprees are not unheard of and some have been quite deadly. A mass stabbing occurred at Lone Star College in Texas in April 2013 that resulted in 14 people being injured. In May 2010, a landlord at the private Shengshui Temple kindergarten attacked the attendees, killing a teacher and six children. In another tragic case, eight elementary students at Ikeda Elementary School in Osaka, Japan, were killed in 2001 by a knife-wielding former janitor who also wounded another thirteen children and two teachers.