HOUSTON -- A 17-year-old student was fatally stabbed and three other students were injured Wednesday morning after a fight at a Houston-area high school, officials said.
The stabbing was reported shortly after 7 a.m. CDT at Spring High School, about 25 miles north of downtown Houston, according to the Harris County Sheriff's Office.
One student tweeted a photo of a blood splatter on the floor inside the school, which has more than 3,000 students and its own school district police.
Three students were detained in connection with the stabbing, officials said, adding that two students sustained minor injuries and a third was reportedly in surgery.
“It was an ongoing battle between kids [of different races]," Pastor E.A. Deckard of the Green House International Church told reporters as he was flanked by family members of one of the victims. "A simple misunderstanding that has been ongoing over a period of time.... This was not gang violence."
One student tweeted that there was "blood everywhere" after the fight, which students said happened in the cafeteria.
"what happened?! They all just trampled me," another student asked. "somebody got stabbed lmao," replied the other student, who added, "Seeing that boy walking down the hallway with blood dripping off of him really broke ny heart the most."
Other students tweeted that there were some racial tensions at the school and worried about revenge attacks.
Parents had flocked to the school searching for news as a fleet of school buses pulled up. One parent, speaking with KHOU-TV, said her daughter called her and said, "Mom, I have a young man here who just fell dead on me.”
"Right now I’m going to get my daughter into counseling, and see what I could do got get her removed from Spring High School, because it could have been my child," said the woman, who was not identified by KHOU-TV.
Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia said that officials had no persons of interest beyond the three students detained for questioning, who remained unidentified.
Garcia said investigators had yet to recover any weapons, which were thought to be "cutting instruments." School police arrived at the scene within a minute of the fight breaking out, Garcia said.
Ralph H. Draper, superintendent of the Spring Independent School District, expressed his sympathies for the victims and their families. He said officials hoped to have the students out of the school by noon.
“Every parent sends their child to school believing that school should be one of the safe-haven places.… It’s what we spend our night and days working for, and what I lose sleep over," Draper said. “We go into this business to make life better for children, and they need to be able to trust the adults who are responsible for their security and their care.”