Fear grips UC Davis campus after 3 separate stabbings

Three brutal stabbings near the University of California at Davis in the span of five days have left two people dead and one in critical condition. 

The first death was reported Thursday before noon when officers found an unresponsive male in downtown’s Central Park. The victim, David Henry Breaux, 50, was well known in the area as “Compassion Guy,” and he often greeted people and asked for their views on compassion, according to the mayor and city council’s statement.

The second stabbing occurred Saturday around 9:15 p.m. when a resident heard a disturbance and went outside to find a young man at Sycamore Park with multiple stab wounds. Authorities identified the victim as Karim Abou Najm, 20, a student at the university and a graduate of Davis High School.

Majdi Abou-Najm, Karim’s grieving father, called his son a “free spirit” and asked the community to aid in bringing the perpetrator to justice. 

“I just call on every person in a capacity to help to capture whoever did this … to please do so,” Abou-Najm said. 

The most recent attack unfolded Monday at about 11:45 p.m at a homeless encampment near UC Davis. Police said that a 64-year-old woman was stabbed through a tent and is currently in critical condition at the hospital. 

“Be aware of your surroundings, know who may be watching, avoid places where you can’t really see anything,” Police Chief Darren Pytel said. “Lighting is important.”

As of now, Davis Police has stopped short of issuing a curfew, saying it’s an extraordinary move at this time. 

Investigators believe the crimes could be connected to one suspect, but nothing has been confirmed. In order to help with the current investigation, UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco sent officers to help patrol the UC Davis campus, and campus police at UC Davis have tripled their patrols. The FBI also is assisting with the investigation.

After the latest stabbing, police released a description of the suspect: male with a light complexion, curly hair and a thin build, standing at about 5 feet, 6 inches to 5 feet, 9 inches tall.

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