Investigators and friends say that the Bronx, New York teenager accused of fatally stabbing a classmate and injuring another in school was the target of relentless homophobic bullying, CBS News New York reports.
Abel Cedeno, 18, was arraigned on Thursday in court. The Police arrested him on multiple charges, including murder, attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon.
The attack happened on Wednesday during a history class at the Urban Assembly School for Wildlife Conservation. Authorities allege that Cedeno used a switchblade in his assault on 15-year-old Matthew McCree, who died, and 16-year-old Ariane Laboy.
Cedeno’s friends told New York Daily News that Cedeno was bullied since the beginning of the school year.
“The kids were calling him a f—-t, calling him a s–c. After it had been reported numerous times and there was no reaction from the school, Abel felt (there was) no other way out,” Savannah Hornbeck, a 34-year-old family friend, told the newspaper, adding that Cedeno would often come home in tears.
CBS reported that Investigators said Cedeno had been bullied by other students in the past, but Wednesday was the first bullying incident involving McCree and Laboy.
He was pushed over the edge when the two bullies, who were sitting behind Cedeno in class, began taunting and throw pencils at him.
A source told CBS that Cedeno went to the bathroom and came back. However, the pencil throwing resumed. After a verbal exchange, Cedeno lunged at McCree with the blade, which investigators believe he bought two weeks earlier. Laboy was injured when he intervened.
The Daily News reported that Cedeno is under suicide watch and expected to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.