Police arrest boy, 16, for alleged killing of River Valley High School student

SINGAPORE — Police have arrested a 16-year-old Singaporean teen for his suspected involvement in the death of a 13-year-old boy.

In a statement on Monday (19 July), the police said that on 19 July, at about 11.40am, the police received a call for assistance at 6 Boon Lay Avenue.

Upon arrival, officers found the 13-year-old lying motionless, with multiple wounds, at a toilet at the said location – River Valley High School. The 13-year-old teenager was pronounced dead at scene by a paramedic from the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF).

Preliminary investigations revealed that the two students are not known to each other. "Notwithstanding the preliminary findings and the arrest of the teenager, the police are continuing their investigations into the motive for the assault. An axe was also seized as case exhibit," the police said.

The police will be charging the 16-year-old Secondary 4 student in court on Tuesday with murder, "with a view to seeking an order from the court to remand the teenager for psychiatric assessment".

The police said it will conduct a thorough investigation and the full facts will be established in court. "Pending the court proceedings, the police would like to urge members of public to refrain from speculating on the case out of respect for the family of the deceased."

Multiple police vehicles seen at the scene

Earlier, when news first broke of the incident, local media reported that multiple police vehicles and an ambulance were spotted in the school compound.

Chinese evening paper Shin Min Daily reported that a student had allegedly brought a knife to school to attack another person.

There were also multiple unverified reports and text messages circulating that the attacker is a student of the school and was carrying an axe.

RVHS students are between the ages of 12 and 18. The school offers the six-year Integrated Programme which allows students to skip the O levels.

'Shocked': Chan Chun Sing

Education Minister Chan Chun Sing said in a Facebook post around 4.25pm that "we are all shocked to receive news of the tragic incident at River Valley High School this morning".

"Our thoughts are with the families of the students concerned. Ministry of Education, Singapore is rendering all possible support to them, and the students and staff at the school.

We are working closely with Singapore Police Force on the investigations, and they will be sharing more details on the case in due course," he said.

The Ministry of Education, Chan said, is "determined to work with parents and students to keep our schools safe and have our children grow up and learn together in a trusted environment". He also urged students to reach out to an adult, their teachers or school counsellors if they need someone to talk to.

If you are feeling distressed, you can call SOS' 24-hour hotline at 1800 221 4444. You can also email pat@sos.org.sg.

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