NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Additional security is in place Friday at New Rochelle High School after three violent incidents involving students.
Over the course of nine days one student was killed, another was hospitalized, and a third is wanted by police.
Marked police cars surrounded the school as students made their way in along with random backpack searches, all trying to create a sense of security for students, 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reported.
“It’s really scary because these three things happened in less than a week, so it’s scary for our parents and kids and it’s crazy too,” student Jennifer Oliveras said.
A forum is expected to be held at the school next week to specifically address additional security measures, CBS2’s Janelle Burrell reported.
Meanwhile, hundreds of parents packed a school board meeting Thursday night after a week of violence involving school students. Many are now afraid of what could be next.
“You should not have other children that want to learn have to be concerned, are they going to get stabbed, going to get shot?” said parent Cathy Caliendo.
“It was a nightmare,” said parent Yolanda Valencia. “I didn’t have answers.”
The latest incident happened Thursday morning when police say a 15-year-old student stabbed a 16-year-old in a second floor classroom twice in the side.
Parents found out about it through a text message and an automated phone message that said: “There is currently a lockout in effect at NRHS.”
It prompted some parents like Pam Devita to pull her son out of school early.
“It’s very scary,” she said. “They’re all shaken up.”
Some fear the violence could have long-term implications for the community.
“That’s another concern. Because I have all my money invested in my home. if the property goes down, that’s part of my retirement,” Rich Geraci said.
The alleged motive for Thursday’s stabbing may be revenge. Sources tell CBS2 the alleged attacker was himself attacked Wednesday at a pizzeria a block from campus.
Part of the concern is that the 15-year-old suspect fled the school and is not in custody. CBS2’s Tony Aiello spoke with his distraught mother on Friday.
“I don’t know where he is. If I knew where he was I would be there!” she said.
CBS2 has confirmed that two-years-ago the teen was arrested for stabbing another student outside of Isaac E Young Middle School. He was given a two-year term of probation.
A former school security officer said the suspect is a troubled young man who assaulted him in 2014.
“After he assaulted me they kept him in the school system, after he did that first stabbing, you would think he should not be in the school system around other children when he already stabbed someone. To me it’s totally ridiculous,” Vinny Mirabile said.
Student Aidan DiSalvo said the victims are usually targeted, which is why he doesn’t worry.
“These people are fighting each other for a specific reason and that’s why i don’t have a concern for my safety because I don’t mess with people like that,” he said.
School board members say they’re concerned too and are trying to reassure parents, promising uniformed police officers both inside and outside of the school.
A policy keeping students on campus will also be strictly enforced and the district will conduct a top to bottom security review, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.
“Safety and security of the students and staff is paramount,” said School Board President Rachel Relkin. “Like many of you, we have many questions about recent events that must be answered.”
The district is responding to the latest incident saying there are now more police officers in and outside the school building, more restricted access to campus, and more officers around the North Avenue business district where students tend to congregate before and after school.
As for the student who was injured Thursday, he is expected to survive his injuries.