Extra police to help St. Paul schools following Harding stabbing

Following the fatal stabbing of a 15-year-old student at Harding High School in St. Paul last Friday, St. Paul Public Schools and the St. Paul Police Department have announced an agreement that will station additional police officers at select school locations.

According to an announcement Monday, in partnership with SPPD, a third full-time School Support Liaison will be added to the existing security team at Harding High School, as well as two additional officers each at Central, Como Park, Harding, Humboldt and Washington high schools, at the request of superintendent Joe Gothard.

The officers, "will work closely with each school’s administration and security teams and remain on-site outside the school as an immediate resource," according to the announcement, with "each officer…carefully selected for their previous work with youth and knowledge of the issues impacting our community."

On Feb. 10 at approximately 11:45 a.m., Harding High School went into lockdown after police were called following an altercation. When they arrived, they found school staff members providing aid to a 15-year-old boy, later identified as Devin Scott of St. Paul, who had "apparent stab wounds." It was the victim's first day at Harding High School.

The victim was taken to Regions Hospital, where he died. 

Officers located a possible suspect, a 16-year-old student, and took them into custody. Criminal charges have not yet been filed.

This wasn't the first violent incident involving students this month, and it's the third incident in about three weeks. In late January, a 16-year-old was shot in the head at the Jimmy Lee Rec Center across the street from Central High School.

While parents are concerned about guns in schools, for many in St. Paul, Friday's deadly fight has shifted the focus to what's being done to stop students from settling their arguments with violence.