New York, NY – Police are hunting for a 14-year-old boy wanted for the murder of Barnard College freshman Tessa Majors as one of the 13-year-old suspects in her murder was headed to court on Tuesday morning.
Police believe that the 18-year-old Majors was walking through Morningside Park, near the Barnard campus, shortly before 7 p.m. on Dec. 11 when she was attacked by three teenagers who were trying to rob her, CNN reported.
Police said she staggered up a staircase onto the street where a school security guard found her and called 911, CBS News reported.
Majors was transported to Mount Sinai St. Luke’s Hospital where she died from her wounds.
Police arrested a 13-year-old boy in connection with the murder a day later after he was spotted trespassing in the lobby of a building nearby the crime scene while wearing clothing that matched the description of the suspect, according to CNN.
New York Police Department (NYPD) Detective Vincent Signoretti testified at hearing on Friday that the 13-year-old suspect said he went to the park with two friends on the night of the stabbing to rob people.
Det. Signoretti said Majors was not the boys’ first robbery target that night, The New York Times reported.
“They followed a man with the intention of robbing him and decided not to,” the detective said.
Det. Signoretti testified that the 13 year old told him he watched his two friends grab Majors and put her in a chokehold while they took things out of her pockets, The New York Times reported.
Then the boy said that one of his friends began stabbing their victim with a knife and he watched feathers fly out of her coat, according to the detective.
Police said a folding knife with a four-inch blade was found near the crime scene and is being tested for DNA and fingerprints, The New York Times reported.
Law enforcement sources said the 13-year-old suspect was interviewed by police and confessed with his uncle present.
They also said that the information he provided to detectives has led to other suspects, The New York Times reported.
Police detained a 14-year-old boy on Friday for questioning, but he was later released.
However, he was asked to return to the police station for more questions on Monday night and was being driven there by a family member when he jumped out of the car in Harlem and fled, CBS News reported.
A manhunt is underway in New York City for the 14-year-old suspect wanted in connection with the murder of Majors.
Officials said a third suspect – another 13-year-old boy – that police have not yet located is believed to be the one who stabbed Majors, The New York Times reported.
Sergeants Benevolent Association President Ed Mullins infuriated Majors family when he mentioned the murdered Charlottesville native’s name during a radio interview on Sunday morning as he was discussing lax marijuana laws in New York City, NBC News reported.
“An 18-year-old college student at one of the most prestigious universities is murdered in a park, and what I’m understanding, she was in the park to buy marijuana,” Mullins said. “And you think about that, we don’t enforce marijuana laws anymore. We’re basically hands-off on the enforcement of marijuana.”
“So here, we have a student murdered by a 13-year-old and we have a common denominator of marijuana. You know, my question to the people of New York City is, ‘Why is this happening?’” he asked.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who was the intended target of Mullins’ criticism, fired back at the union boss on Twitter.
“Think of Tessa’s parents, her friends. This is heartless. It’s infuriating. We don’t shame victims in this city,” de Blasio tweeted.
Police have not said on the record what the Barnard student was doing in Morningside Park when she was attacked, NBC News reported.
Mullins apologized for his remarks but said they were aimed at the mayor and had been taken out of context, WABC reported.
“This student Tess Majors is clearly a victim of a robbery homicide,” he said. “She went to a prestigious school. Her family is suffering. But in many ways, I blame the mayor for trying to slant this in a different direction.”
Mullins said he had been making the point that Morningside Park had become much less safe and de Blasio’s policies were responsible, NBC News reported.