NEW YORK — An 18-year-old college student was stabbed to death Wednesday by a 13-year-old boy during an apparent mugging while walking in a park near her college campus, police said.
Tessa Majors was walking through Morningside Park near Barnard College and Columbia University's campuses around 7 p.m. when she was approached by at least three people, police said.
During the altercation, one of the attackers pulled out a knife and stabbed Majors several times. The group fled and Majors struggled up a flight of stairs out of the park and onto the street. A security guard at Columbia University found her and called for help, ABC News reported.
Majors was taken to a hospital where she died.
“We lost a very special, very talented, and very well-loved young woman,” her family said in a statement, The New York Times reported. “Tess shone, bright in this world, and our hearts will never be the same.”
On Thursday, police noticed a 13-year-old boy in the lobby of a building near where the stabbing took place because he was wearing clothes matching the description of someone involved in the incident, CNN reported. A knife was found on the teen when he was taken into custody on suspicion of criminal trespass. Investigators said he admitted to the robbery attempt and stabbing, CNN reported.
Majors, a first-year student at Barnard, had quickly made a mark around campus. Majors was a writer and musician who had recently celebrated her band’s first performance.
“Everyone knew her from her green hair,” Mariah Hesser, 18, told the Times.
Maria Blankemeyer knew Majors from a writing class they had together.
“She was bold,” Blankemeyer, 19, told the Times. “She was always the first one to say something weird. She’d always find some theme no one had seen before.”
Hundreds of people gathered Thursday night for a vigil.
The passing of Tess Majors is an unthinkable tragedy that has shaken us to our core. We are all grieving, and trying to grasp the senseless tragedy that took Tess from us,” Barnard president Sian Leah Beilock said in a statement. “Tess was just beginning the journey here at Barnard and in life -- but I have no doubt Tess was on the way.”
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