Murrysville, PA- A student at Franklin Regional High School has been identified as the alleged attacker in Wednesday’s early morning stabbing rampage that injured more than 20 people.
16-year-old Alex Hribal, a sophomore, has been charged with several counts of attempted homicide and aggravated assault. He was arrested after being accosted by the assistant principal following the attack and was taken into custody.
The stabbing occurred in a very short time period. Hribal allegedly began his abrupt assault on fellow students in a science classroom just after 7 am, before classes were starting. Several witnesses recall similar accounts of quickly discovering that a violent individual was storming through the school with two 8-inch knives.
Junior Gracey Evans was in a hallway when she heard someone talking about blood. “I saw this kid in all black running down the hallway, stabbing. He was just stabbing everybody that was in his way.” After a fire alarm was pulled, students began fleeing the school. It’s estimated that Hibral was running rampant for about 5 minutes before he was apprehended.
It remains unknown why Hribal went on a stabbing spree, and an investigation has been launched to find a motive. He has been Westmoreland County District Attorney John Peck said in court that when Hribal was apprehended by officials, he expressed a suicidal disposition.
Hribal’s defense attorney, Patrick Thomassey, described the teenager as a “typical kid” whose parents have had an active presence in his life. “All the students liked him. He wasn’t a loner. He worked well in groups, and this happened. So there’s a reason for it — that’s what I’m saying. And we have to get to the bottom of that,” said Thomassey. The consensus of students interviewed was that he had never been violent or irrational before this incident.
Hribal is currently being held without bail and will be charged as an adult, although Thomassey is seeking to move the case to juvenile court. He said Hibral’s parents are horrified. “(His parents) offer their condolences to everybody involved in this case. They’re very upset. They did not foresee this coming at all,” said Thomassey.
Follow Annabelle on Twitter.