WASHINGTON, D.C. – Some 14 people were hurt Tuesday in what appeared to be a mass stabbing at a community college in the U.S. state of Texas. A suspect is in custody, police said.
The apparently random attack occurred at the CyFair campus of Lone Star College near Houston. At 10:57 a.m. a Twitter message stated: “LOCKDOWN at LSC-CyFair. Seek shelter now. If away, stay away. Updates to follow.“
Thomas Gilliland, a spokesman for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, told journalists that according to an initial report a suspect was wrestled to the ground by a student and arrested by police.
Four of the 14 wounded were airlifted from the scene, he said.
He could not confirm what type of weapon had been used, saying some reports said it was a pencil while others said it was a knife.
Alan Bernstein, another spokesman for the sheriff’s office, told CNN that authorities had no confirmation of a second suspect.
“However, this is a sprawling campus with hundreds of people who had regular business there,” he said, adding it would take a long time to do interviews and “make sure there is not another suspect or suspects.”
An alert on the school’s website – which put the number of victims at 11 confirmed victims – said the campus was on lockdown and being evacuated.
“The incident occurred near and around the Health Science Center and remains an active crime scene with changing and evolving information,” the notice said.
The Harris County Sheriff’s Office “has one suspect … in custody and another suspect may possibly be at large,” it said.
Robert Rasa of the CyFair Volunteer Fire Department, described the scene as “pretty chaotic.”
He said 15 patients were treated. Of the four that were taken to hospital by helicopter, the “injuries were consistent with lacerations,” he told CNN.