School Stabber Was 'Shy,' Now 'Confused, Depressed'

Franklin Regional High School students tell their stories

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 10, 2014 12:34 PM CDT

(Newser) – We're starting to get a clearer idea of yesterday's stabbing spree at Franklin Regional High School, and of Alex Hribal, the boy who police say did the stabbing, as students step forward to tell their stories. Here's what we know so far:

  • Gracey Evans, who's been celebrated for potentially saving a victim's life by putting pressure on his wounds, tells KDKA that it's another victim, her best friend, who deserves praise, because he stepped in front of her as the attacker swung. "I probably would have been the one that was stabbed and not him. He took the knife for me."
  • That best friend, 16-year-old Brett Hurt, spoke at a hospital press conference describing his terror at being stabbed in the back. He says he barely knew the attacker, and doesn't think he can go back to school anytime soon, the AP reports. "I might freeze," he says.

  • Sophomore Trinity McCool tells USA Today that the stabber chased her, though he never actually managed to hurt her. "When he was chasing us, I saw this face—the look in his eyes. I was horrified."
  • Alex's lawyer today gave interviews with CNN and ABC to tout his client's virtues. "He's a typical young kid. He's a B+ student. The family is Ozzie and Harriet," Patrick Thomassey says. "All the students liked him. He wasn't a loner. … So there's a reason for it—that's what I'm saying. And we have to get to the bottom of it."
  • Right now, Alex is "confused, scared and depressed," Thomassey said. "I think he understands what he did. I don't think he at this point understands the gravity of what he did."
  • "I've never seen any anger from him, ever," one classmate who says he knows Alex "pretty well" tells the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "He never seems very upset or any of that." He says the teen has fairly typical interests like video games and hockey.
  • But another classmate described Alex as "a little misunderstood," adding, "I just always felt like he had a different side to him that nobody knew and it was, like, hard to uncover." Another described him as the "shy kid in the corner."

Stabbing victim Brett Hurt, 16, a sophomore at Franklin Regional High School, sits next to his mother during a news conference at Forbes Regional Hospital, April 10, 2014, in Monroeville, Pa.   (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Alex Hribal, the suspect in the stabbings at the Franklin Regional High School near Pittsburgh, is taken from a district magistrate after he was arraigned, April 9, 2014 in Export, Pa.   (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
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