SOMERVILLE — Police questioned a Tufts University student Sunday as a “person of interest” in an overnight stabbing of two Boston men at a fraternity, which triggered a campus lockdown.
No arrests had been made in the attack, which happened shortly before 4 a.m. at the Delta Tau Delta house, as of early Sunday evening. Police arrived to find the two men, 20 and 19, stabbed in the neck inside the fraternity, located on a side street in the heart of the Tufts campus.
The 20-year-old was listed in serious condition after undergoing surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, police said. The 19-year-old was released from the hospital after being treated for less serious injuries.
The victims are not affiliated with the university, but knew their attacker, according to police. Six Tufts students are currently living at the house, and three of them were home at the time of the attack, police said.
“I want to make this clear. We believe now there’s no threat to the Somerville community,” Police Chief David Fallon told reporters at the scene.
Both victims were “bleeding but conscious” when officers arrived at the fraternity, said Mark Keith, deputy chief of Tufts’s campus police.
Police provided few details about the attack, which came two weeks after graduation.
The university, which is located in Medford and Somerville, issued an emergency alert about 5 a.m., advising students and staff to stay inside and lock their doors. They later notified the campus that police were searching the area for a suspect in a serious crime.
The advisory was lifted about 8 a.m. after police completed their search of the campus and immediate vicinity and determined that the attack was not random.
Michael Miele, 22, who lives two doors down from the fraternity, said he and some friends returned home around 3 a.m. and spent some time outside but heard nothing from Delta Tau Delta house, he said.
“If there was a party, it would have been much louder,” he said. “But there was no noise, no yelling, nothing.”
Miele only realized that something had happened when his phone began beeping with the campus emergency alerts.
“It was pretty apparent something bad had gone on, so we went inside, made sure the doors were locked, and went to bed,” he said.
The fraternity house is on Professors Row, which is lined on one side by neatly manicured fraternity and sorority houses. Fallon called the neighborhood a safe and “very quiet” area.
Campus police said they have had few problems with the fraternity, and students said it has a reputation for being generally well behaved.
“Whenever I think of any of the frats, I think of DTD as the safest,” said Stephanie Tercero, a recent Tufts graduate.
Jim Russell, executive vice president of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, said the national office is working with chapter leadership and alumni volunteers in Boston to determine what happened, and is “cooperating with the police investigation as it proceeds.”
“At this time our thoughts are focused on the speedy recovery of the injured parties,” he said.
The fraternity is represented on 136 campuses, and has almost 10,000 undergraduate members.
The Delta Tau Delta chapter at Tufts, named Beta Mu, dates to 1889.
In 2005, the chapter lost university recognition after a student was hospitalized during a pledge event, according to the campus newspaper. The chapter was allowed to return to its fraternity house in 2011.
Moses Holton, a member of the fraternity, came by to pick up his car around 8:45 a.m., but was told by police he couldn’t.
Holton said Tufts police told him the fraternity’s members were all safe.
“It’s definitely crazy,” said Holton, who lived in the house last semester. “Just a stabbing in the house is crazy.”
Tufts senior Anthony Debenedetto, a member of a nearby fraternity, said he was struggling to make sense of what happened.
“I didn’t think that things like this happened here,” said Debenedetto, 21, who lives off campus. “At Tufts, it feels like you’re in a bubble.”