Teen charged for fatal stabbing of Harding High School student pleads guilty to manslaughter

A 17-year-old has entered a guilty plea after being charged with fatally stabbing a student at Harding High School in St. Paul earlier this year.

According to a spokesperson for the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office, the teen pleaded guilty on Tuesday to an amended count of first-degree manslaughter that was filed the same day and was adjudicated by the juvenile court. The spokesperson said a 103-month sentence was imposed but stayed until he is 21.

A final disposition is scheduled for Nov. 29 for victim impact statements, and officials add the teen will be ordered to complete a juvenile services program in Red Wing.

Court documents show that prosecutors tried to certify the juvenile as an adult, however, Judge JaPaul Harris denied that certification in October.

As previously reported by 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, the juvenile — who was 16 years old at the time of the stabbing — was initially charged with one count of second-degree murder for fatally stabbing 15-year-old Devin Scott on Friday, Feb. 10, 2023.

Scott died at Regions Hospital despite emergency aid provided by school staff. His death was the city’s first homicide of 2023.

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According to a statement of probable cause, the principal of Harding High School saw two students arguing with another student and then saw them start fighting. The teen and Scott were identified as two of the students who were involved in the fight.

Multiple staff members arrived and tried to break up the fight, but once the students were separated, the juvenile got off the ground and was holding a knife, and then allegedly stabbed Scott in the stomach before walking away.

After going into a lockdown, students were let out of classes at 1:20 p.m. that day, and district leaders announced the cancellation of all evening and weekend events at Harding High School. Classes were also canceled on Monday and Tuesday at the school, but students returned on Wednesday, with new safety protocols in place.

Scott’s family spoke with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS days after he died, saying they agreed with authorities that Scott would still be here if a police officer had intervened instead of school staff.

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