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Columbia student killed, Italian tourist hurt by knife attacker in NYC

Columbia student killed, Italian tourist hurt by knife attacker in NYC
Police said they arrested a 25-year-old suspect near New York City's Central Park, where he was in possession of a large kitchen knife. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 3 (UPI) -- Authorities said Friday that a graduate college student and a tourist were stabbed in New York City at two different locations, but likely by the same attacker in what appear to be random attacks.

Police say the first attack happened late Thursday when a Columbia University student was attacked in Manhattan's Morningside Heights. The 30-year-old man, Davide Giri, died of his injuries.

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The second attack occurred a short time later in a different part of Morningside Heights and wounded a 27-year-old tourist from Italy. He was hospitalized with knife wounds.

Investigators said a third person was also threatened by the assailant, who's believed to be responsible for both knife attacks.

A 25-year-old suspect was later arrested near Central Park with a large kitchen knife. Police said he's a reputed gang member with a long criminal history, which includes assault. They said he was released from prison on parole in 2017.

Authorities said Giri was walking to his apartment after soccer practice when he was attacked. He was a Ph.D candidate enrolled at Columbia's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the university's president said.

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Investigators haven't identified a motive for the attacks. It's believed that both victims were targeted randomly.

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