KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The mother of a teen student fatally stabbed inside a Kansas City middle school is sharing her grief and frustration.
Manuel Guzman’s mom said on Tuesday they dropped him off at Northeast Middle School. Minutes later, her family got the call that he’d been stabbed.
“I parked. I normally never park, but I had that gut feeling as a mother that something was not right,” Vicenta Guzman said. “So I stayed and parked. I just knew I was going to wait for a call.”
The 14-year-old was stabbed six times during a fight with another student in a school bathroom.
Hours later, doctors delivered the heartbreaking news that Manuel had died. His mom said each stab wound was life-threatening.
What she initially thought would be a minor injury turned into a tragedy.
“What they did to him was wrong,” Vicenta said. “It’s not fair that they took my only child, my twin, my half. They took my heart away.”
Vicenta said Manuel, or Manny as everyone called him, loved to skate and spent a lot of his time on weekends at the Winnwood Skating Center.
He wanted to be in the NFL and was already looking up colleges with scholarship opportunities.
“He didn’t even make it to his graduation. He won’t make it to his football team no more. He won’t make it to college, but these other kids out here in this world will have that opportunity,” Vicenta said.
The teen suspect, who has not been named, is facing first-degree murder, armed criminal action and unlawful use of a weapon charges in the Jackson County Juvenile Court.
But Guzman, like many Northeast Middle School families, still has questions for the school district.
“For the schools and the security guards, where were they when this was happening? Why didn’t anybody do anything quick and fast?” the Kansas City mom said.
“When someone gets stabbed, I’m pretty sure that my son yelled, and no one was there to hear,” she added.
Other parents want to know how the teen suspect even got a knife into a school that has metal detectors in the first place. Kansas City Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Mark Bedell said the district is investigating and reviewing its security plan.
Manny’s mom said she hasn’t heard from district leaders in the two days after her son’s death.
Meanwhile, Vicenta said she’s going to stay strong, and she wants the community to stay strong, too, because that’s what her son would want.
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