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17-year-old charged with attempted homicide after allegedly beating fellow student with crowbar

FAWN TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A student was beaten with a crowbar Tuesday afternoon at a bus stop in Fawn Township after an argument with another student that started on a school bus, authorities said.

Both boys attend Longmore Academy, a school for at risk youth. The student who was beaten was taken to UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh in critical condition with several skull fractures, according to a criminal complaint.

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As Russell Smith, 17, got off the bus through the emergency exit at a stop along Jolly Hill Road, investigators said that’s when the 14-year-old victim grabbed a crowbar that was mounted near the bus driver and ran after him.

The victim hit Smith in the knee, according to police. The boys then began fighting and Smith was able to grab the crowbar, which he used to hit the other boy in the stomach and forehead, police said.

The victim was knocked out and Smith hit him again, this time in the top of his head, the complaint said.

Smith told detectives he blacked out after that and that the last thing he remembered was standing over the victim, throwing the crowbar and running away.

When police found and arrested Smith after he tried to run from officers, he allegedly said, “I just did a homicide,” the complaint said.

This is 17-year-old Russell Smith. He is being charged as an adult with attempted homicide after allegedly beating a...

Posted by WPXI-TV Pittsburgh on Wednesday, March 4, 2020

He was taken to a hospital to be treated for a leg injury.

Smith is being charged as an adult and faces charges of attempted homicide and aggravated assault.

Click here to read more about how Pennsylvania determines to charge a juvenile as an adult.

Amy Smith, of MHY Family Services’ Longmore Academy, sent Channel 11 the following statement:

“The tragic incident that occurred shakes both the education and mental health system. The entire MHY Family Services organization is dedicated to promoting mental health recovery for those effected by trauma, and our hearts go out to the students and families impacted by this tragedy.”