SOUTH GATE, Calif. - A male student stabbed two fellow students and a dean at a Los Angeles-area high school Friday, forcing a temporary lockdown at the school. A campus police officer hurt his back in the scuffle.
Five people were taken to area hospitals after the attack at South East High School in South Gate, Los Angeles County Fire Department Inspector Matt Levesque said. The incident was reported minutes before 11 a.m., he said.
The assailant was taken to a hospital as a precaution to make sure he wasn't injured during his arrest, school district officials said.
Los Angeles Unified School District police officer Steve Zipperman told ABC7-TV that the argument started with the male student choking and arguing with the female.
"The dean tried to intervene and during that the dean realized the male had a knife and was attacking the female student," Zipperman said. Another student was injured while trying to intervene.
The initial victim, a female student, was initially in serious condition but her injury and the others' injuries appeared non-life threatening, Zipperman said.
Students told local television stations that the attacker was the former boyfriend of the female student.
The attack took place in an open courtyard away from classrooms, Levesque said.
It wasn't immediately clear what triggered the initial confrontation. A precautionary lockdown was ordered but lifted a few hours later and classes resumed.
Grief counselors were immediately made available to students at the school, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy said.
South East High School has about 3,000 students and is located about 15 miles south of Los Angeles.