Student Stabs 14 in Texas, Fantasized About Attack

An American college student stabbed 14 people, leaving two victims critically wounded, in a rampage just outside of Houston, Texas.

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Rachel Hirshfeld, Chana Ya'ar,

 Police officers seal off Cyfair campus of Lo
Police officers seal off Cyfair campus of Lo
AFP file

The 20-year-old American student who stabbed 14 people at a Texas college campus told investigators that he had fantasies of killing people and had planned the attack, sheriff's officials said late Tuesday.

"According to the statement the suspect voluntarily gave investigators, he has had fantasies of stabbing people to death since he was in elementary school," a statement from the Harris County Sheriff's Office said. "He also indicated that he has been planning this incident for some time."

Quick went on a stabbing rampage that left two victims critically wounded and ended when he was wrestled to the ground and taken into custody, police said.

Television images showed a red-headed white youth with a goatee being led off in handcuffs after the incident at the sprawling Lone Star College's Cyfair campus, about 60 miles north of Houston, the AFP news agency reported.

Authorities were alerted to a "male on the loose, stabbing people," shortly after 11:00 am (1600 GMT), Sheriff Adrian Garcia of the Harris County Sheriff's Office told reporters.

"A suspect has been taken into custody, a white male, that we believe is approximately 21 years of age, and currently enrolled," he said.

"We do not know exactly what type of weapon was used other than to say that it is at this point an unknown instrument," he added.

Authorities said 14 people were stabbed in the attack, which appeared to have occurred in and around the college's Health Science Center.

Four of the wounded were air lifted by helicopter to area hospitals. Two were reported to be in critical condition.

Police initially said the assailant went "building to building" stabbing people on the sprawling campus.

According to a report published by The Houston Chronicle, the suspect was tackled by Ryan Ballard, a Lone Star sophomore, and another student.

Ballard told the newspaper he noticed blood on the stairway as he walked to class in the Health Science Center building. Ballard said he saw three girls screaming and crying, one of them holding her bloodied neck. He then heard someone say, "Stop him!" before he "saw this guy running from the building."

Ballard, who is 6 feet 4 inches tall and weighs about 235 pounds, said he pushed the suspect to the ground after another student grabbed him.

The college was placed on lockdown after the alert was raised, with students being taken off campus while buildings were searched.

An alert on the school's web site said the incident occurred "near and around the Health Science Center and remains an active crime scene with changing and evolving information." The college is due to re-open on Wednesday.

Police discounted early reports of a second assailant.

Robert Rasa of the CyFair Volunteer Fire Department described the scene as "pretty chaotic." Television images showed crowds of onlookers caught in the lockdown and police searching trunks of cars as they left campus, according to AFP.

The incident comes only months after the December killing of 20 first-graders and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

The 20-year-old gunman in that tragedy, Adam Lanza, had earlier shot and killed his own mother before heading out on the killing spree with a semi-automatic assault rifle that left more than two dozen dead in a matter of minutes before turning a hand gun on himself.