Six children and three adults have been hospitalized – including resettled refugees – after a mass stabbing in Boise in what police say is the single most severe attack in the city’s history.
Four of the victims sustained life-threatening injuries, according to police. In a media briefing Sunday afternoon, Boise Police Chief Bill Bones released updates regarding the suspect, the attack and the victims.
According to Bones, 30-year-old Timmy Kinner of Los Angeles, California had been granted a temporary place to stay at the Wylie Street Station apartment complex by another resident of the apartments. Due to his behavior, Kinney was asked to leave the complex and did so without incident.
"He returned last night to exact revengence not just on those that he had been with, as they were not at the apartment, but at any target that was available," says Bones.
.@BoisePD Chief Bill Bones says Timmy Kinner returned to the apartment complex to exact revenge after getting kicked out on Friday. Victims included a young girl who was having a birthday party. @KBSX915
— James Dawson (@RadioDawson) July 1, 2018
The police chief then went on to describe how Kinner attacked at a birthday party for a three-year-old girl who'd previously been his neighbor at the apartments. He targeted the children first, injuring two four-year-olds, a six-year-old, an eight-year-old, a twelve-year-old and the three-year-old birthday girl.
Kinner also attacked three adults who attempted to intervene.
Bones credited the life-saving measures and medical talents of first responders for their response to the scene. As of Sunday afternoon, all nine victims had survived the night. Due to her extensive injuries, one child has been flown to Salt Lake City for treatment.
“As you can imagine, the Wylie Street apartment and our community is reeling from this attack,” Bones said. “It’s not a symbol or a representation of our community of Boise, but it’s a single, evil individual who attacked people with no provocation that we’re aware of.”
Police say 30-year-old Timmy Kinner of Los Angeles, Calif. has been booked at the Ada County jail on nine charges of aggravated battery and six charges of injury to a child – all felonies. A motive hasn't been released.
Kinner had been living at the apartment complex until he was asked to leave Friday, authorities say. It’s unclear how long he may have been in Idaho.
12-year-old Esrom Habte and his friends were playing behind his family's apartment in the late evening light on Saturday when he says he saw the suspect.
"When we were outside he was chasing people and stabbing them so we went inside the closet," Habte said. "We saw a killer and we didn't want to get stabbed."
Before they got to the closet, he said he saw an adult being stabbed "...really hard and a lot of times."
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) released a statement in response to the Saturday night attack:
"We are shocked and saddened by this senseless attack on members of the Boise refugee community. The IRC is working with local partners in Boise to provide counseling and support to refugees and other members of the community shaken by this incident.
"We are also supporting families to find and pay for temporary housing, providing travel logistics for those needing medical care out of state, and encourage families needing other help, or afraid for their safety, to reach out at the apartment building where we are this afternoon, or come to the IRC office." - Julianne D. Tzul, Executive Director, International Rescue Committee in Boise
On Sunday, several people left bouquets of flowers just outside the police line, including Donna Hale. She and her family learned of the news late Saturday night and felt she had to do something.
"We didn’t know what to do so we did the little thing we could which is just to say, ‘We see you and we’re sorry and we care," Hale said.
Police responded to a call about a man with a knife at an apartment complex near Wylie and State streets around 8:46 p.m. Saturday night.
They say victims, who include members of the refugee community, were found both inside the apartment complex and in the parking lot.
Investigators were searching a nearby canal and the crime scene late Saturday night. Bones said police believe the knife used in the stabbing was discarded by the suspect prior to his arrest.
“I would ask for our community’s hearts to go out as I know they will and for their prayers for the families of everybody that’s involved here,” Bones said.
This is a breaking story and will be updated as more information becomes available.
Follow James Dawson on Twitter @RadioDawson for more local news.
Copyright 2018 Boise State Public Radio