ANCHORAGE, Alaska —All
4 boys, who police said ranged in age from 8 to 10, were in serious
condition at local hospitals late Monday, a police spokeswoman said.
A 33-year-old man who was rambling incoherently stabbed four
boys in the neck at an elementary school Monday before classes were
scheduled to start. Police Officers, including the chairman of the community
patrol, could subdued him and stopped further injury.
View Elementary School student Kevin Bruno, who said
he witnessed the attack, is comforted by his mother,
View Elementary School -Monday May 7, 2001 - ONE
BOY HAD PREVIOUSLY been listed in critical condition. Two of the
victims were brothers. Police charged Jason Pritchard, 33, with four
counts of first-degree assault and four counts of attempted murder. He was
ordered held in lieu of $2 million bail. Deputy Police Chief Mark Mew said
officers were investigating reports that Pritchard had been living in his
car. Mew said the suspect had "a fairly extensive misdemeanor
The children, part of a group waiting for a breakfast for low-income
students at Mountain View Elementary School, were on a playground when the
attacks started [School
Safety Site Assessment]. They fled inside, with their attacker
apparently chasing them and continuing to strike before he was cornered by
teachers, police said [Crisis
Response Plan Training].
Investigators were still piecing together the sequence of
events, Mew said. "We know the situation was dynamic and part of it
occurred outside," he said. Keith Lacek, an 11-year-old student at
Mountain View who lives about a block away, said Pritchard had been
loitering near the school building in recent days and had brandished a knife
at approaching students [Kids
are the Keys Assembly]. Parrish Harris, a 9-year-old
friend of one of the victims and a witness to the attack, said he had not
seen Pritchard before. Anchorage School Superintendent Carol Comeau said she
had not received any complaints about suspicious individuals near the
school. Staff members are "very attuned to trespassers on school
grounds," she added.
The school canceled Monday and Tuesday classes, and
Comeau said beefed-up security measures would be discussed at a school board
meeting Monday night. The Mountain View neighborhood, in northeast
Anchorage, is one of the city’s poorest. Parents of students at the
school had previously expressed concern about their children’s
- A community violence prevention program).
Evette Carmack rushed to the school from her job at
Alaska Regional Medical Center, still dressed in green scrubs. She has two
children at the school, fifth-grader Christopher and second-grader Jasmine.
"I came from Chicago to get away from all this," Carmack said.
"To get a better life for my kids."
Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.