A 14-year-old student injured three teachers and two students with a knife this Thursday at a secondary school in southern Spain, a very rare event that moved political and religious authorities to ask for an “urgent” reflection on violence.
Armed with two knives, the teenager began his attack shortly after morning classes started at the Elena García Armada Secondary School in Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, said Adrián Domínguez, a police spokesman.
“The alleged perpetrator of the events was located on the third floor, (he had) in his possession two knives used to attack three teachers and two students,” he told the press. After being neutralized, the suspect was taken to a police station, he added.
The regional head of Education, Patricia del Pozo, stated that the injured have already received medical attention, but only one of the teachers, who was hit in the eye, will have to undergo surgery.
After the events became known, a crowd of worried parents gathered around the center, then surrounded by the police, waiting for news of their children, according to images broadcast by Spanish television.
“It has been devastating,” lamented the mayor of Jerez de la Frontera, María José García-Pelayo.
“It was dramatic because all the parents were outside the center and logically wanting to be able to hug their sons and daughters”he added.
The students, who were able to leave the institute shortly after, will have psychological support services at their disposal, said the mayor.
According to the testimonies of several students, The suspect attacked classmates with knives, as well as the teacher who was injured in the eye, before going to another classroom.
“I have seen the kid with two knives, looking like he wants to stab everyone,” explained a student to regional television Canal Sur, without giving his name or surname.
“A classmate comes in, runs to the back, leaves his backpack on the floor and, suddenly, takes out two knives. He starts shouting ‘I’m going to kill you,'” another student in the class recalled in statements to La Sexta, also under anonymity.
We are all in shock. We didn’t expect it at all.
“We are all in shock. We didn’t expect it at all,” he added.
“We do not know the cause,” which motivated the teenager to commit an action of this type, indicated the regional president of Andalusia, Juanma Moreno, who acknowledged having “been scared all morning,” since the situation could have been “much more serious.”
Having already turned 14, the age of criminal responsibility in Spain, the suspect could be prosecuted by a juvenile court..
In a country very unaccustomed to these cases, several authorities asked that attention be paid to the issue of violence, especially among young people, after what happened in Jerez.
“We should all reflect on the role that violence plays in all areas: television, cinema, in the field of (video) games, in the social field (…) in social networks,” Moreno insisted, one of the most influential politicians in the Popular Party, the great formation of the Spanish right.
“I think this invites us to a reflection that is urgent in our society,” said the general secretary of the Episcopal Conference, Francisco César García Magán, on his side.
“This news is pointing out a serious situation for the present and a difficult perspective for the future of our society,” he added.
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