Kansas City, MO – A 14-year-old boy was fatally stabbed during a fight at a Kansas City middle school on Tuesday.
The incident occurred at Northeast Middle School in the 4900-block of Independence Avenue at approximately 9 a.m. on April 12, KMBC reported.
Police said they responded to the scene and discovered that 14-year-old Manuel Guzman had been stabbed during a confrontation in a school bathroom.
The teen was rushed to Children’s Mercy Hospital with life-threatening injures and succumbed to his wounds later in the day, KRCG reported.
Investigators did not identify the suspect, but said he was another student at Northeast Middle School, which educates seventh- and eighth-graders, according to KMBC.
He has been charged in Jackson County Juvenile Court for offenses of unlawful use of a weapon and first-degree murder.
Guzman’s family and friends established a makeshift memorial for Guzman outside the school on Wednesday.
“It’s tragic. That was my little cousin,” Juan Guzman told KMBC. “I didn’t get to say goodbye. I didn’t even get to say goodbye.”
Juan Guzman said he is also heartbroken that his cousin won’t get to achieve the many goals he’d set for himself.
This is the scene at Northeast Middle School in Kansas City. KCPD has the area blocked off after a stabbing at the school that has left a person suffering from life threatening injuries. Police believe it to be a student. @KCTV5 pic.twitter.com/H5ePAT26Bm
— Greg Payne (@GregKCTV5) April 12, 2022
“It is with a heavy heart that I must inform you that our Northeast Middle School (NEMS) student has passed away from today’s incident,” Kansas City Public School Superintendent Mark Bedell wrote in a letter to parents and guardians on Tuesday, according to KMBC. “We will do everything we can to make sure we support the families who are involved in this tragedy through this difficult time.”
Bedell said he was “devastated” for the students, family, and community of Northeast Middle School.
“We will have additional counselors and clinicians at NEMS to provide support for students and staff,” he noted. “We are working to make sure every school has the resources they need to support students and staff this week. I trust our trauma team to lead this work as we move forward together.”
“Our students need us – now more than ever,” Bedell wrote.
Our schools should always be safe environments for our young people to learn. I am horrified to learn of a stabbing at a Kansas City middle school just after the beginning of the school day. We are in touch with our school district partners and authorities.
— Mayor Q (@QuintonLucasKC) April 12, 2022
Classes were canceled after the stabbing and students were released to their parents and guardians at approximately 11 a.m. on Tuesday, KMBC reported.
Additional security officers were on hand at Northeast Middle School when it reopened on Wednesday.
A fundraiser established to help Guzman’s family with funeral expenses has raised more than $32,000 so far.