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Three-year-old girl dies after being stabbed at birthday party in US, authorities say

Timmy Kinner is accused of stabbing a group of children and adults at the party on Saturday.

A boy places a stuffed animal as other people kneel at a memorial during a vigil at City Hall in Boise, Idaho
A boy places a stuffed animal as other people kneel at a memorial during a vigil at City Hall in Boise, Idaho
Image: Rebecca Boone via AP

A THREE-YEAR-old girl who was stabbed at her birthday party in Idaho, US has died, two days after a man invaded the celebration and attacked nine people with a knife, authorities said.

Timmy Kinner is accused of stabbing a group of children and the adults who tried to protect them at the party at an apartment complex that is home to many refugee families.

Word of the child’s death came at Kinner’s first court appearance, where Ada County Magistrate Judge Russell Comstock told him that he was charged with first-degree murder and other felonies in connection with the Saturday night attack.

Comstock told Kinner he was “an extreme danger to the community” and ordered him held without bond.

Kinner is American, and the victims are members of refugee families from Syria, Iraq and Ethiopia. Boise Police Chief William Bones said the evidence does not suggest the attack was a hate crime.

The suspect had recently stayed at the apartment complex but was asked to leave on Friday over bad behaviour, Bones said.

Court appearance

The 30-year-old appeared in court through closed-circuit video, a common practice for first appearances in Idaho. Kinner told the judge he didn’t understand the charges or proceedings. He also said he wanted to represent himself.

The judge ordered that he be appointed a public defender anyway.

“I can’t explain the charges any more clearly than I just did,” he told Kinner.

Mass Stabbing Idaho Timmy Kinner appears before 4th District Magistrate Judge Russell Comstock Source: Darin Oswald/Idaho Statesman via AP

Three of the stabbing victims were adults, the others children: the 3-year-old girl who died, two four-year-olds, a six-year-old, an eight-year-old and a 12-year-old.

If convicted, Kinner could be eligible for execution under Idaho law. Ada County Prosecutor Jan Bennetts said her office has not yet decided whether to seek the death penalty, saying those “high-level decisions” are made only after all the facts are in.

Vigil

Yesterday evening, roughly 1,500 people turned out at a vigil honouring members of refugee families targeted in the stabbing.

People wept, sang and shouted their support for the refugee community, and many brought bouquets of white flowers intended to symbolise peace. By the end of the rally, hundreds of bouquets filled dozens of baskets on the steps of Boise’s City Hall.

Mass Stabbing Idaho People attend a vigil at City Hall for those attacked. Source: Darin Oswald via AP

But community leaders told the crowd that what the survivors really need is money to cover rapidly growing medical bills and space at home to try to overcome the constant sense of unease they’ve experienced since the attack. Boise Mayor Dave Bieter and others urged community members to do what they can to help.

Comments are closed as legal proceedings are ongoing. 

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