SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Gang activity concerns are increasing after the fatal stabbing of a teenager in Scranton.
Eyewitness News has been following developments ever since the deadly stabbing happened Wednesday afternoon.
Crosses, balloons, and emotional messages adorned a parking lot light post-Friday afternoon at 3 W Olive Plaza. It’s the scene of Wednesday’s stabbing which claimed the life of 18-year-old Tyler McKenna.
“Essentially, what we’re dealing with are some youthful offenders turning to violence and retaliating,” stated Mark Powell, Lackawanna County District Attorney
McKenna was stabbed to death Wednesday following a large brawl. It turns out McKenna had a warrant out for his arrest for an alleged crime earlier this month.
While Powell did not say if the stabbing was directly connected to that, he did say the ongoing investigation reveals a gang connection.
“I think it’s a little alarming to everybody involved. These are particularly in the high school youth gangs, wannabe gang members but essentially there are several known groups,” explained Powell.
The three students arrested are enrolled in the Scranton School District. With the school year ending June 30th and graduation season here, the district responded with a statement to Eyewitness News saying in part,
Our level of concern is high. The district has put in place extra security measures and is reinforcing safety protocols in all our school buildings. All attendees at our high school graduation ceremonies will be required to pass through metal detection devices. Additional law enforcement officers will be on duty at these events.”Scranton School District
Deanna Feduyk of Scranton is a hospital nurse who says she’s treated trauma patients including some the result of gang violence.
“I mean, yeah, I am concerned. We saw everything like gunshot wounds and stabbings,” said Feduyk
It’s that kind of violence and the potential for retaliation from Wednesday’s stabbing that has the D.A. urging vigilance.
“Really, my message to parents would be to know where your children are and maintain that line of communication. It’s more important now than ever,” stated Powell.
Amir Williams and Nahsyeis Williams, both 16 years old and 17-year-old Sheldon Datilus are charged as adults in connection with Wednesday’s deadly stabbing.
Homicide charges are expected to be filed next week.