A 16-year-old cheerleader captain from New York was stabbed to death in the middle of a parade celebrating the state championship won by the high school's basketball team. A 15-year-old suspect is currently in police custody.
On April 8, Kayla Green participated in the parade for Mount Vernon High School's basketball team's victory at the state championship. In broad daylight, around 3:55 p.m., Green was stabbed in the back and the side by another girl as she was leaving the parade. A Mount Vernon police officer intervened in the stabbing about a block away from the parade, but the suspect got away.
Green died on her way to the Jacobi Medical Center.
Investigators reportedly located and arrested the suspect in nearby Dobbs Ferry after the FBI traced her cell phone. The Westchester County Prosecutor's office claimed that the suspect fled the scene of the crime and attempted to discard the murder weapon. The suspect – whom authorities are not naming because of her age – allegedly flaunted the knife on social media before the stabbing.
The suspect also allegedly stabbed Green's best friend, who has not been named. The injured girl's mother – Nicole Duncan – said her daughter "will never be the same,"
"This is Westchester County. This [should not have] have happened here," Duncan told News 12 the Bronx.
Mount Vernon Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard said the second victim sustained non-life-threatening lacerations.
"I am devastated and completely outraged. We began our day celebrating the greatness and success of our youth and we ended it with a young life that has been taken by senseless and inexcusable violence," Patterson-Howard said in a statement. "The mental emotional and spiritual health of our community especially of our children must be the priority and we must come together. As a community our common unity must be the safety and healthy development of our young people. Our heartfelt prayers and condolences go out to the family, friends, and the entire community of Mount Vernon.”
Shannae Haywood – a spokesperson for Green's family – said at a vigil Monday, "Kayla was a beautiful big sister and a special young woman with dreams and ambitions of becoming a doctor one day. She was a cheerleader, a captain, an inspiration."
"We want to thank the police officer that risked his life to stop a mob of misguided, violent teens. We thank him and his partner for recognizing that Kayla needed life-saving treatment and their efforts to save her have not gone unnoticed," Haywood added.
Cheerleading coach Mikeya Knox said, “Kayla had plans. She wanted to go to Morgan State University. She wasn't a kid who hung out on the street. She was a good kid."
The New York Post reported on a social media post by Green's grieving mother.
"I am not strong please pray for me while I try to pray for myself at this point I feel like I want to die and bury with my child," the mourning mother allegedly wrote "She was only 16 and they took my baby away from me I want to die right now. don’t even know how to say RIP to my daughter this feels so unreal."
A GoFundMe was launched this week to attempt to get "justice" for the deadly stabbing of Kayla Green.
The description of Green on the crowdfunding site said the sophomore JV cheer captain was an honor roll student and talented dancer. The campaign has raised just over its financial goal of $30,000 at the time of publication.
Green's family alleged that the suspect had a history of bullying their daughter.
A Westchester County judge has ordered that the 15-year-old suspect remain in custody. The suspect faces charges of first-degree manslaughter, first-degree attempted assault, and second-degree assault. The office of Westchester County District Attorney Mimi Rocah revealed that the manslaughter charge could be upgraded after a grand jury reviews the case.
Pamela Hayes – the suspect's defense attorney – said, "Everyone is jumping to conclusions. The things that are being said have nothing to do with what happened here."
Crisis counselors were available to students at the school as well as friends and family of the deceased victim.