Classes canceled until Monday at school where fatal stabbing occurred

Sept. 5, 2013 at 8:14 AM
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SPRING, Texas, Sept. 5 (UPI) -- Classes at Spring High School in Spring, Texas, were canceled for the rest of the week following the fatal stabbing of a student, school officials said.

School district spokeswoman Karen Garrison said the high school would resume classes Monday and that security would be beefed up as well, the Houston Chronicle reported Thursday.

Garrison did not detail what the enhanced security measures would mean for students and faculty.

A 17-year-old student, Joshua Broussard, was killed and three other people were injured Wednesday in a fight at the high school in Spring, about 20 miles north of Houston, officials said.

Late Wednesday, authorities charged Luis Alonzo Alfaro, 17, with murder, accusing him of pulling a knife during the fight and fatally stabbing Broussard. Under Texas law, Alfaro is old enough to be considered an adult.

Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia said a confrontation mushroomed into a fight and weapons were drawn. During a news conference Wednesday, he said the incident "may have been gang related," but did not elaborate and the Sheriff's Office said deputies had not been called to the school about gang violence previously.

The Rev. E.A. Deckard of Green House International Church -- a spokesman for the family of one of the victims -- said the incident was not gang violence but "simply a misunderstanding between two people" in a dispute that had been going on for some time, the Chronicle said.

Parents expressed frustration about the lack of information provided by school officials Wednesday, as well as the nearly three-hour lag between the incident and official word from the district, the Chronicle reported.

Spring Independent School District Superintendent Ralph Draper said the school had to be secured immediately after the stabbing and district administrators could not interfere with the police investigation before officials could communicate with parents.

More than 200 people participated in a prayer vigil Wednesday night at a Baptist Church near the high school, the Chronicle said.

"We're a diverse community and we came here to pray for our community. We are not going to heal overnight," said the Rev. Mark Estep, the church's senior pastor. "Spring is a family. We know each other and we care about each other."

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