Rockford stabbing attack kills 4, injures 7 in Winnebago Co., police say; suspect in custody

USPS mail carrier among victims, authorities say

ByMark Rivera, Liz Nagy, and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Thursday, March 28, 2024
4 killed, 7 injured in Rockford stabbings attack
A Rockford, IL stabbing attack left at least four people dead and seven injured Wednesday in the Winnebago County city, authorities said.

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At least four people died in a stabbing attack Wednesday in Rockford, Illinois, police said.

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Rockford police said they received their first calls about the incident in the 2300-block of Holmes Street at about 1:14 p.m.

Within minutes, police, paramedics, and sheriff's deputies, were spread out around a few close residential blocks responding to multiple crimes that they believe are connected in both Rockford and Winnebago County.

Police said in the city of Rockford, four people were killed, one person remains in critical condition, and four others were seriously injured, though not all of them were stabbed. An additional two people were injured in Winnebago County outside of Rockford, bringing the total number of injured victims to seven, and the total number in the attack to 11.

Among those killed were a 15-year-old girl, a 63-year-old woman, a 49-year-old man and a 22-year-old man, police said.

U.S. Postal investigators say one of their letter carriers is among the deceased, but officials have not released any further information about him.

"The Postal Inspection Service can confirm that a United States Postal Service (USPS) letter carrier was one of the victims in today's incident in Rockford, IL," a statement form USPIS spokesperson read. "At this time, there are no additional details we can provide, as this is an active investigation. Postal inspectors are on scene with the Rockford Police Department and other first responders."

The Rockford Fire Department said one of the people who died was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but did not survive.

A suspect in the attacks, a 22-year-old man, was located nearby and was arrested around 1:35 p.m., police said.

Police gave an update after 4 were killed and 5 injured in stabbings in the Rockford area.

The Winnebago County Sheriff's Department said there was a home invasion near Florence Avenue and Eggleston Road. Sheriff Gary Caruana said a young woman escaped that home invasion and was pursued by the suspect. She was stabbed in the hands and face and is hospitalized in serious condition.

Garuana said a good Samaritan stopped to help the woman and was also stabbed by the suspect, but was not seriously injured.

A sheriff's deputy took the suspect into custody. Rockford police said the suspect is being interviewed at this time and charges have not yet been filed.

Police said they do not believe any other suspects are at large in the attack. They said federal agents are also assisting in the investigation.

There was no information immediately available about a possible motive.

Anyone with additional information or surveillance footage has been asked to contact Rockford police at 815-966-2900. Anonymous tips can be sent to 815-963-7867.

The city announced counseling services for residents impacted by the attack. The services will be available from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday at Flinn Middle School, 2525 Ohio Parkway.

Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara issued a statement about the attack:

"Today, we are shocked by another horrific act of violence against innocent members of our community. We can report that the suspect is in custody and the threat has been neutralized. Now that he is in custody, our primary concern is ensuring that our community members directly impacted by this violence are supported throughout their healing and recovery. We are working with community partners to provide support and services quickly and conveniently to those residents. We will announce those details soon. We have multiple jurisdictions working on multiple crime scenes to develop an understanding of what transpired in an effort to prevent this from happening again. We will continue to provide updates."