Teen beaten and savagely stabbed to death
Authorities are questioning a group of teens in connection with the murder of a Barnard College student who was stabbed to death during an attempted robbery in an upper Manhattan park, according to a new report.
Police were speaking with the teens following the slaying of freshman Tessa Majors, 18, who was beaten and stabbed at the base of stairs in Morningside Park near West 116th Street and Morningside Drive around 5.30pm on Wednesday, ABC 7 reported.
A school security guard called police upon discovering her body, riddled with stab wounds.
Investigators found a trail of blood indicating that Ms Majors had tried to make her way back up the park stairs toward Morningside Drive, police sources said.
Preliminary information suggested that Ms Majors was stabbed several times in the face, neck and under her arm.
She apparently had put up a fight when the thugs tried to rob her, the sources added.
Ms Majors was rushed to Mount Sinai St. Luke's Hospital, where she died.
Police found the woman's mobile phone nearby, which was how she was identified.
Barnard College president Sian Leah Beilock issued a statement about Ms Majors' death late on Wednesday, calling it "tragic news".
She said she had spoken to Ms Majors' parents, who were on their way to New York from their home in Virginia.
"We are also in close touch with the New York Police Department as they conduct this ongoing investigation and seek to identify the assailant in this horrible attack," Ms Beilock said.
"Tessa was just beginning her journey at Barnard and in life."
She continued, "We mourn this devastating murder of an extraordinary young woman and member of our community. This is an unthinkable tragedy that has shaken us to our core. Please know that we are all grieving together and I am thinking of you as we process this awful news as a community."
Barnard students were being shuttled around in campus security vehicles late on Wednesday.
"This is so horrible. When you hear about the stuff, that's the shock," said Tristen, a student teacher at the school, who declined to give his last name.
"That's crazy if it's just a robbery. I can't imagine any way to justify this."
Another student, from France, said the school had warned people about the dangers of going into the park.
"During the day it's fine, but they tell us to be careful at night," the student told The Post.
Students gathered on campus past midnight, hugging and crying early on Thursday.
Some posted comments on Ms Majors' Instagram page.
"I miss you already," Lexi Phelan wrote.
Students at both Barnard College and nearby Columbia University were on edge in the wake of the murder.
"It's just so shocking that it happened so close to campus," said Camila Vicioso, a 20-year-old Columbia freshman. "She was just walking in Morningside Park, not even that late. It's crazy.
This article originally appeared on NY Post and was reproduced with permission