ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A Virginia high school student died on Tuesday when he was stabbed in the midst of a large fight at a shopping center, police said.
Alexandria police said in a news release that officers were called to the Bradlee Shopping Center at approximately 12:26 p.m. News outlets report that between 30 and 50 people were involved in the fight in the parking lot at a McDonald’s.
As officers attempted to control the group, they found 18-year-old Luis Mejia Hernandez, who died after he was taken to a local hospital, police said.
“I am saddened to share with you the news of the passing of one of our Titan seniors from the Class of 2022,” Alexandria High School Principal Peter Balas said in a letter to the school community and shared through his social media. “[Luis] will be greatly missed by the Titan community especially in the International Academy.”
Wednesday will be a virtual learning day for students, Balas said, to “allow our school community the time and space to grieve and process this loss.”
Investigators are looking at surveillance video and interviewing witnesses to the fight, police said. Alexandria City High School put its King Street and Minnie Howard campuses on a “secure the building” status due to the stabbing, and school officials staggered afternoon dismissal so that students would leave in smaller groups led by staff.
Police do not have a suspect in custody. The shopping center is a popular lunch spot for students from the high school. Last September, a teen was shot near the same McDonald’s.
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