6th Person Charged in Connection With Vernon Stabbing

Police have arrested another juvenile in connection to an assault and stabbing that injured a 17-year-old Rockville High School student and another person on a trail in Vernon on Friday night, the sixth arrest tied to the case.

The stabbing and assault happened on the Rails to Trails near the Ryefield Apartment Complex just after 10 p.m. The victim's mother said her son has been involved in an ongoing dispute with another group of teens since May and that there has been violence before.

On Monday evening police arrested a 15-year-old who is accused of threatening a witness who gave information in the stabbing investigation. This is one of several arrests tied to the case.

Investigators allege that the suspect sent the victim threatening messages on Snapchat to intimidate the witness. The suspect was charged with intimidating a witness, threatening, and breach of peace.

During the course of the investigation, on Monday police also arrested two other juveniles believed involved ina  fight on September 9 on Village Street. They were each charged with breach of peace. Police said those suspects are part of the group involved in the ongoing dispute.

"Since the stabbing Friday night several more people have come forward and we've been able to reinvestigate some prior incidents and file some additional charges," explained Vernon Police Lt. William Meier.

All three of the suspects arrested Monday evening are Rockville High School students, according to police.

A 17-year-old Vernon resident who is believed to be the person responsible for stabbing the teen multiple times was arrested early Monday morning.

Also on Monday morning, police arrested another a 17-year-old Vernon resident who is believed to be responsible for hitting the teen multiple times with a bat, causing serious injuries.

Officers believe the second juvenile also hit another person with the bat and caused additional injuries. Authorities said the assault took place at the same time and location as the stabbing.

"One of the juveniles allegedly stabbed the victim while the other hit him with a bat. There was also a second victim who was cut on his finger and he was also struck with the bat as well," Lt. Meier added.

Both juveniles were taken into custody and face charges including assault, conspiracy to commit assault, breach of peace and possession of a dangerous weapon. Police said they are being held in the Hartford Juvenile Detention Facility and will appear in court on Monday.

On Friday, police made arrests after finding a car in an apartment complex on Terrace Drive that was believed to have been involved in the incident. Inside of the vehicle, police said they found a hunting knife, a baseball bat and a wooden pole that had knife blades taped to both ends.

Officers arrested Haley Machholz, 19, of Vernon, and Jakwai Sosa, 20, of Hartford, along with a 15-year-old who was in the car with them. The three were charged with possession of a weapon in a motor vehicle. Police said they believe they were going to retaliate for the stabbing.

"I believe those three individuals, who we arrested Friday night, were trying to retaliate for the stabbing attack," Lt. Meier said.

Sosa is being held on $15,000 bond. Sosa and Machholz are due in court on Oct. 1.

There will be extra police and security at Rockville High School until further notice as a precaution.

The investigation remains ongoing and officers said more arrests are expected. Anyone with information is asked to call Vernon Police. Callers can remain anonymous.

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