Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Student charged over stabbing spree at a Texas community college

A police helicopter circles above the Lone Star Community College in Cypress, Texas (AP)
A police helicopter circles above the Lone Star Community College in Cypress, Texas (AP)

A 20-year-old man was charged today over a stabbing spree at a Texas community college that injured at least 14 people.

Sheriff's officials said student Dylan Quick faced three counts of aggravated assault over yesterday's attack at Lone Star Community College in Cypress, about 20 miles from Houston.

Harris County Sheriff's Office said Quick, from Houston, used a "razor-type knife" to attack his victims and pieces of the blade were found at the scene.

Quick told investigators he had fantasies about stabbing people to death since primary school.

Investigators also say Quick indicated he had been planning the attack for some time.

Thea building-to-building attack happened at about 11.20am. Diante Cotton, 20, said he was sitting in a cafeteria with some friends when a girl clutching her neck walked in, yelling: "He's stabbing people! He's stabbing people!"

Mr Cotton said when he and his friends went outside, they saw half a dozen people with injuries to their faces and necks being loaded into ambulances and medical helicopters.

Sheriff Adrian Garcia said officers responded to the campus after receiving a call about a man "on the loose" stabbing people.

"Some of the details in the call slip did indicate that students or faculty were actively responding to work to subdue this individual," he said. "So we're proud of those folks, but we're glad no one else is injured any more severely than they are."

Lone Star officials initially urged people on campus to take shelter and be on alert for a second suspect. But the sheriff's department said a short time later that authorities believed just one person was responsible.

Student Teaundrae Perryman, 21, said he was in class when he received a text message from a friend and went outside to see a young woman being loaded into an ambulance with what appeared to be stab wounds to either her neck or head. He said he did not receive an email alert from the college until 11.56 a.m.

"I was concerned but I wasn't afraid because I was with a large group of people," he said, adding: "The police got to the scene very quickly."

Four people taken by helicopter and two others with moderate injuries were taken to Memorial Hermann Texas Trauma Institute. Of those six, two were in a critical condition and four were in fair condition, hospital spokeswoman Alex Rodriguez said.

One student said she learned one of her classmates was stabbed after leaving the school's Health Science Centre building.

"I called to check on another classmate who was still inside the building and she said the classroom was on lockdown and she said one of the classmates had been stabbed," Margo Shimfarr-Evans told KHOU-TV. "It happened in the hallway."

Courtland Sedlachek, 18, was in class when his phone started buzzing along with the phones of everyone else in class. The room was temporarily locked down, but students were let out and off campus a short time later, in what Mr Sedlachek described as an orderly evacuation.

He described his reaction as a "little bit of nervousness".

The attack came three months after a different Lone Star campus was the site of a shooting in which two people were hurt. The suspected gunman in that incident is charged with aggravated assault.

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