SPRING, Texas — A fight, possibly gang-related, broke out at a suburban Houston high school Wednesday, leaving one student dead of stab wounds and three other students injured, authorities said.
The confrontation unfolded shortly after 7 a.m., a few minutes before classes began at Spring High School, one of the largest high schools in Harris County. The 3,500-student campus, about 20 miles north of downtown Houston, was locked down throughout the morning. After the authorities determined that the school was secure, they kept students in classrooms to interview potential witnesses.
Adrian Garcia, the Harris County sheriff, said the confrontation might have been gang-related, and investigators were questioning three people. He said no arrests had been made but several people were detained.
The victims and those being questioned were students at the campus, which started its school year last week. The student killed was a 17-year-old male junior, the authorities and parents of students at the school said. The weapon has not been recovered. Two of the victims received minor injuries; the condition of the other was not immediately known.
“Every parent sends their child to school believing that school should be one of the safe-haven places, a place where they can send them and receive them back at the end of the day,” said Ralph H. Draper, the superintendent of the Spring Independent School District. “It’s what I lose sleep over. In my nearly 30-year career, this is the one thing that you pray never to experience.”
The stabbing follows two recent violent episodes at a nearby community college. In January, a dispute between two students led to gunfire at Lone Star College’s North Harris campus, a few miles south of Spring High School. Four people were sent to hospitals, and the campus was evacuated. In April, more than a dozen people were stabbed at another Lone Star College campus by a troubled 20-year-old student.
The authorities said Wednesday that the sheriff’s department and the school district’s police department would provide additional security at Spring High School for the next few days.