Several questioned in attack on girls

January 15, 2008 4:07:48 PM PST
As students returned to West Philadelphia High School, some thought about the violent attack against two students near the school on Monday.

Just after dismissal, 15-year-old Shakia West and 16-year-old Khianna Little were waiting for a bus near 48th and Spruce Streets when 10 teenage girls jumped out of a car and attacked. At least one of them slashed the girls with a box cutter or straight edge razor.

"They was just walking and next thing you know everybody just started coming and attacking. We didn't know where it was coming from," said Jamira Moore.

While Khianna, reportedly the intended target, suffered superficial wounds, it took 100 stitches to sew the cuts on Shakia's face.

"She took 60 stitches to put her nose back on her face. Twenty stitches under her nose, 30 stitches to the side of her face, two to her ear and two to her eye," said her aunt, Rhonda Carson.

Police questioned a string of girls about the slashing incident. Among them was Neil Rawlerson's daughter.

"All I know is they're saying she had something to do with the incident that happened yesterday. I don't know if she's being the one that's charged with the actual cutting of the girl's face. I don't condone any of that. I think all this violence needs to stop," he said.

Police and parents suspect the incident stemmed from a fight between Khianna and another girl in December, and long standing tensions among some girls fed into it.

"Complete jealousy. The girls are jealous of each other. Jealous if you look better," said Senya Saunders, the mother of one of the students who was questioned.

"We've heard different talk that it just may be somebody doesn't like the way someone else looks and that's really sad. Right now we have somebody seriously injured and we're going do all we can to hold the people accountable who were responsible for that crime," said Capt. Ben Naish.

Authorities are also trying to figure out how to quell the tensions that fed the incident.