According to the teen’s father, Devin Scott was killed at Harding Senior High School on his first day there.
D. Denelle A sophomore named Edward Scott, 15, went by the moniker “Cheese.” Napoleon Scott remarked that he was a lively young man who enjoyed hanging out with friends and was good at basketball.
“I want people to know that (despite) the way he died, he wasn’t a bad person,” said Nadia Scott, 22, one of Devin’s older sisters. “He had the heart of a lion” and would stand up for what he thought was right, she said.
His sister referred to him as “very silly. I never took him seriously.
After an altercation late on Friday morning, Devin Scott was stabbed in a school hallway. The mother of three of Devin’s siblings, Jolaine Sanders, claimed that his brother, a 15-year-old in a nearby classroom, wanted to leave and assist.
She claimed the adolescent informed her that he told her, “I gotta get to my brother, I gotta get out,” but he was prevented from leaving the classroom.
Tuesday will see no business at Harding. It was closed on Monday. After the stabbing, police officers are going back to Harding and four other high schools in the St. Paul district, at least temporarily.
Charging Decision Expected Tuesday
Police on Friday arrested a 16-year-old Harding student at the East Side school.
A judge gave the Ramsey County attorney’s office a 24-hour extension to decide whether to file charges against the teenage suspect; according to spokesperson Dennis Gerhardstein, prosecutors are likely to choose to file charges on Tuesday.
The incident on Friday might be connected to a prior homicide.
Antwan Calvin Watson, 16, was slain in a daylight shooting in a St. Paul alley in October. Watson had been detained for bringing a stolen gun to Harding in April. A second 16-year-old was accused of murder.
According to a law enforcement source, there had been a rift between the two groups before the shooting, and the fight grew due to both sides’ disdain for social media. According to the source, the same disagreements led to the brawl and stabbing on Friday at Harding.
The father and sister of Devin Scott said on Monday that they were unaware of that possibility. They claimed that from what they could tell, Devin was stabbed while attempting to assist a friend who was engaged in a physical altercation. The police department has not disclosed the cause of the stabbing.
Father Said Son Received Threats
Before beginning at Harding, Napoleon Scott claimed his kid had been receiving threats on social media; his father claimed he was unsure why. Devin Scott attended Humboldt High School on the West Side, according to his father, in the past.
Napoleon Scott added, “I hope they can do better — put metal detectors in there — because… it could have been stopped, but it wasn’t, and the worst happened.
The city police department will station two officers outside of Harding, Central, Como Park, Humboldt, and Washington high schools, according to a Monday announcement sent by St. Paul Public Schools to its staff. According to district spokeswoman Erica Wacker, they will remain there until at least the end of this week.
According to a letter from Laura Olson, the district’s security and emergency management director, “These officers will collaborate closely with each school’s administration and security staff and remain on-site outside the school as an instant resource.”
Employees of the St. Paul public school system and the police force cannot recall another instance of a homicide within a school.
School Closed Monday And Tuesday
Harding will remain closed Tuesday.
Take a look at the tweet:
BREAKING: there are reports of a stabbing inside Harding High School.
Adults on scene tell me their students are not allowed in or out.
A district spokeswoman calls it a serious incident and writes, “The school followed its safety procedures and went into a lockdown.”@kare11 pic.twitter.com/yphNXis1SY
— Jennifer Hoff (@JennHoffReports) February 10, 2023
Principal Be Vang wrote to the school’s families, “Our entire school community has to come together to heal. I look forward to welcoming everyone back on Wednesday to begin that process.” The crisis support team for the school system will remain accessible to kids and families on Tuesday.
The St. Paul Federation of Educators arranged a candlelight vigil outside the school on Monday night, and more than 200 people showed up.
The crowd was told by St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter that “our schools must be sanctuaries of peace.”
Take a look at the tweet:
The stabbing at Harding today is sad and infuriating. My heart is with the family and friends of the victim, as well as the entire school community who is grieving the loss of another youth to senseless violence. There are no words to describe or ease this pain. (1/2)
— Mayor Melvin Carter (@MayorCarter) February 10, 2023
“The fact that we are standing here simply means that we have not done enough to keep ourselves from having to stand here,” he said.
We all need to contribute to this job, Carter said.
About 70 young Black males who died violent deaths have had their funerals officiated by the Rev. Runney Patterson of New Hope Baptist Church, who spoke to the grieving.
“Listen to me, young men; listen to me, young women,” Patterson said. “Use your heads, not your hands. Don’t let a five-second mistake take you away from your family, take you away from the community, and take you away from the life that you could be living.”
President of the Harding School’s 2023 graduating class and senior Hawti Boranto urged her fellow students to “depend on one other and hold each other during these challenging times.”
“This tragedy will fully change the trajectory of this community, and I just pray and hope that the ripple effect is positive and brings us peace,” she said.
Family members of Devin released numerous white and blue balloons as the vigil concluded.
To “consider strategies to help our students,” Harding staff members met on Monday and will do so again on Tuesday, according to Vang’s message to parents.
The school system is assigning a third full-time school support liaison to Harding in addition to the police presence, according to Olson.
Since the school board decided to stop paying city police officers to serve in the schools in June 2020, the district’s school support liaisons, employed and trained by the community, have taken over as the district’s primary security employees.
The choice was made in response to the previous month’s murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police.
In reaction to “traumatic occurrences at or around” the campuses of the five schools, Olson stated on Monday that the district was implementing the security measures.
Last month, a Central student was shot and critically hurt at a public leisure center close to the high school. Two days later, a conflict between students after school resulted in the shooting of a Washington staff member in the ear.
At least four students have been found in possession of firearms at Harding over the past two academic years.