A 22-year-old man has been arrested in connection with a stabbing spree Wednesday afternoon in Rockford, Illinois, that left four people dead, including a U.S. postal worker and a teenage girl, and seven other victims injured, police said.

The suspect, Christian Soto, was arrested in the frenzied attack, according to the Rockford Police Department. Soto faces four counts of murder and seven counts of attempted murder, as well as two counts of home invasion with a dangerous weapon, authorities said.

A motive for the attack remains under investigation, police said.

The names of the slain victims were not immediately released, but police said they include a 15-year-old girl, a 63-year-old woman, a 49-year-old man, and a 22-year-old man. One of the victims was said to be in critical condition, with four others in serious condition.

PHOTO: An officer brings out bags of evidence after a stabbing incident on March 27, 2024, near Cleveland Avenue in Rockford, Ill.

An officer brings out bags of evidence after a stabbing incident on March 27, 2024, near Cleveland Avenue in Rockford, Ill.

Kara Hawley/Rockford Register St via USA Today Network

“Words can’t even express my thoughts right now; this is a pretty painstaking event,” Rockford Police Chief Carla Redd said at a news conference Wednesday, adding, “This was a heinous crime.”

A mail carrier was among those killed, according to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

Police initially said there were nine victims of the attack, including the four who were killed. The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office confirmed Thursday that two additional victims connected to the violence were subsequently located.

PHOTO: Christian Soto, 22, pictured in this jail booking photo, is suspected in a stabbing spree on March 27, 2024, in Rockford, Ill.

Christian Soto, 22, pictured in this jail booking photo, is suspected in a stabbing spree on March 27, 2024, in Rockford, Ill.

Winnebago County Jail

Redd said that not all of the victims were stabbed, but did not elaborate. She said no guns were involved in the attacks.

The attacks unfolded around 1:14 p.m., local time, in a residential neighborhood in southeast Rockford, which is about 88 miles northeast of Chicago, according to authorities, who noted this was a “multi-jurisdictional crime scene.”

Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana said the crime spree included a home invasion in which a young woman was stabbed multiple times. She was identified as the victim who is in critical condition.

“The young lady ran from him. She’s got some stab wounds on her hands and her face. She is currently in the hospital and she is intubated,” Caruana said.

Caruana said a “good Samaritan” who stopped to help the injured woman, was also stabbed, suffering non-life-threatening injuries.

The attacks ended about 1:35 p.m. when Soto was taken into custody, according to the Rockford Police Department.

Court records reviewed by ABC affiliate station WTVO in Rockford show Soto listed at an address in a neighborhood near where the slayings occurred. He is scheduled to make his first court appearance Thursday afternoon.

PHOTO: Police stand in the street after a stabbing incident on Cleveland Avenue on March 27, 2024, in Rockford Ill.

Police stand in the street after a stabbing incident on Cleveland Avenue on March 27, 2024, in Rockford Ill.

Kara Hawley/Rockford Register St via USA Today Network

Within minutes of the attacks, police, paramedics, and sheriff’s deputies responded to multiple crimes that spread from Rockford into an unincorporated area of Winnebago County, authorities said.

Police said they do not believe any other suspects are at large in the attack. Rockford Police Chief Redd said that federal agents also are assisting in the investigation, though the assisting agencies weren’t specified.

Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara released a statement Wednesday, saying, in part, “Today, we are shocked by another horrific act of violence against innocent members of our community.”

“We can report that the suspect is in custody and the threat has been neutralized,” the statement continued. “Now that he is in custody, our primary concern is ensuring that our community members directly impacted by this violence are supported throughout their healing and recovery.”



Source link

Leave a Reply