A student who ‘smiled’ as he stabbed four people inside a classroom at the University of California, Merced, before he was killed by police has been identified.
Faisal Mohammad, a freshman from Santa Clara who majored in computer science and engineering, was shot dead by officers after his violent campus rampage on Wednesday morning.
The 18-year-old, described as antisocial by his roommate, was supposedly ‘having fun’ as he lunged at his classmates with a hunting knife before a construction worker thwarted the attack.
Police are still investigating the contents of a backpack he was carrying at the time, while a witness said a bomb squad detonated something near the scene.
The FBI are now trying to figure out the motives, the Merced Sun Star
Andrew Velasquez, who lived alongside him in the college dorms, told ABC30
Mohammad was anti-social and was always alone on campus.
‘Didn’t talk much. And I never saw him walk with anybody. Walking to class, I never saw him walk with anybody.
‘Every time I would try and say something he would just ignore it.’
Kristen Halliday, UC Merced freshman, told the station she and a group of friends trapped in their dorm room above the scene saw the bomb squad.
‘They did detonate something. We heard the sirens and then they said, ‘fire in the hole’ and then it detonated.’
Lensy Maravilla, 19, a first-year student, told Fox News
she was in a biology class, when a female student ran in.
Maravilla said the student ‘was crying hysterically and came in and said that she had seen somebody get stabbed, or slashed, in the throat and she ran.’
Sheriff Vern Warnke from Merced County said they asked specialists from Fresno County to investigate what he was carrying.
|This student pictured with his girl friend was among those stabbed
Police cancelled classes on Thursday so they could continue their investigation.
During a news conference on Wednesday afternoon, Sheriff-Coroner Vern Warnke said that the weapon used in the stabbings was a hunting knife between 8 and 10 inches long.
The university said that two students, one staff member and a vendor were wounded but were expected to recover. Two of the victims were airlifted to specific hospitals for treatment.
As of Thursday morning, one student remains hospitalized but officials believe they will be fine, One other student was treated and released.
The staff member suffered a collapsed lung and was recovering Thursday after successful surgery.
And one of the victims – Byron Price – has been hailed a hero for his actions.
Warnke said the building contractor’s entrance into the classroom likely prevented the death of the first victim who was attacked.
Price, 31, said when he went to investigate what he believed was a fist fight, the suspect lunged at him, stabbing his left side.
‘He had a smile on his face, he was having fun – which is more what bothers me,’ he told CBSFresno.