Police: Motive unclear in birthday party stabbing attack

posted by Associated Press -

From the Associated Press and posted by our media partner at WOOD TV:

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Several families who had fled danger and violence overseas were enjoying a 3-year-old's birthday party in Boise, Idaho, when the unthinkable happened: A man ran up and began chasing and stabbing the children, turning his knife on the adults who tried to intervene.

The attack came Saturday night at a low-income apartment complex that is also home to refugee families from around the world. Nine people were injured, including the birthday girl and five other children ranging in age from 4 to 12.

The most gravely injured were clinging to life Sunday evening, Boise Police Chief William Bones said.

"The  victims are some of the newest members of our community," Bones said  Sunday. "This was an attack against those who are most vulnerable."

The chaos began shortly before 8:46 p.m. Saturday, when police received a report of a man with a knife. They arrived less than four minutes later to find victims lying in the street, in the parking lot and inside the complex. Thirty-year-old Timmy Kinner was found and arrested a short distance away; investigators later found a knife believed to be used in the attack in a nearby canal. 

Members of refugee families from Syria, Iraq and Ethiopia were among the injured.

Kinner, who is not a refugee, had been asked to leave the apartment complex Friday after staying there for a short time with a resident, Bones said. Kinner faces several felony charges, including aggravated battery and injury to a child. Bones did not know Sunday if Kinner had an attorney.

"We have no specific evidence at this time to believe it was a hate crime,"  Bones told reporters at a press conference Sunday, saying the victims may have simply been targeted because of where they were located on the property. Still, Bones said, the motive remains under investigation.

Click for more on the story courtesy of the Associated Press.

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