A suspect has been arrested over a stabbing at Sonoma State University
One person has been fatally stabbed at Sonoma State University campus in California. On Sunday, May 13, at approximately 5.50pm, the local police department was alerted to the fact that a man had been attacked inside the Alicante building in the college's residential community. The victim died at the scene shortly after firefighters arrived. A suspect has since been arrested by law enforcement, but whether or not he has been charged is still unknown.
Little information has been released about either the attacker or the victim and it is still unknown whether either of the two men were students or faculty members. However, the police have confirmed that they were both "college-aged." As a result of the homicide, the college was placed on lockdown.
Police cordoned off the entrances and exits to the Alicante building with tape and students were ordered not to leave their rooms. In the wake of the incident, the university released the following statement on social media once the situation was safe: "Based upon the available information at that time, police determined there was no further threat to the student population and campus community… The Petaluma Police Department has agreed to assist in the investigation ... Grief counsellors have been directed to the residential community locations to support students. Updates will be provided as information becomes available."
Student Kyle Stickels told reporters that he might have spotted the attacker just after the stabbing occurred, stating: "We heard some screaming and I ran outside to see what was going on, because it was obvious; no joking around, screaming. I looked around and there was a guy. He started walking down the stairs. And I looked at him and he came around and then I saw the right side of him. And his arm was all bloody and he was carrying a knife. And I just kind of stared at him. And he looked at me and he said, ‘I was attacked.’ And at that point, me and my friends started telling everyone to get inside."
In April 2018, Sonoma State University was apparently cited by California's state auditor for its failure to meet standards for protection against hazardous materials. In an 87-page report, state auditor Elaine Howle claimed that Sonoma "did not completely comply with requirements related to the oversight of health and safety policies, training and the inspection of laboratory safety equipment," and that the college had failed to conduct regular inspections of "critical safeguards." Responding to this damning document, University President Judy Sakaki said: "We can do better and we will do better to increase the safety of our employees and students. We want to get it all right."