Nearly a week after the fatal stabbing of a Buffalo State College student outside of Richmond Quad, University Police have identified a “person of interest” in connection with the case but have yet to announce any arrests.
UPD is continuing “to make progress in its investigation into Friday’s tragic incident on North Campus,” the university said in a statement Monday. Police say the stabbing
“likely stemmed from a physical altercation between several individuals who most likely knew each other” and insist that “there is no ongoing danger to the university community.”
It has been at least 30 years since “anything similar” has happened on campus.
The victim, Tyler Lewis, was a 19-year-old sophomore at Buffalo State College majoring in pre-business administration. The Baldwin, NY native played baseball and attended NASA space camp as a child, according to CBS 2 News.
The case’s person of interest is described as a white male between the ages of 19 and 22 with light brown hair, a medium build and a height of approximately 5’5 to 5’9. He was wearing a blood-covered yellow shirt and had several facial cuts, including “large diagonal laceration across his forehead.” Witnesses say he fled the scene in a black four-door sedan.
Police are also searching for at least three other individuals involved in the incident.
UPD has increased patrols outside the Ellicott Complex and on the rest of North Campus as a precaution.
UPD is urging anyone with information to call them at 716-645-2222.
The Spectrum has compiled a timeline of the events following Friday’s tragedy.
Friday, Oct 14 at 7:30 p.m.: Buffalo State College student and 19-year-old Tyler Lewis is fatally stabbed outside the Richmond Quad in the Ellicott Complex. The killer flees the scene shortly thereafter in a black four-door sedan.
Friday, Oct. 14, 8:21 p.m.: University Police announce in a UB Alert that they are “investigating an assault” outside of Richmond and instruct community members to avoid the area.
Friday, Oct. 14 at 8:41 p.m.: An ambulance with flashing lights leaves the scene of the crime.
Friday, Oct. 14 at 9:15 p.m.: Police detectives arrive at the scene. They put down evidence markers and take photos of the scene.
Friday, Oct. 14 at 10:15 p.m.: Police announce in a UB alert that suspects have fled the scene and that “there is no imminent danger to [the] university community.”
Friday, Oct. 14 at 11:46 p.m.: Police announce that what was previously described as an “assault” was a fatal stabbing that they are “actively investigating.” It is also disclosed that the victim is not a member of the UB community and was transported to Erie County Medical Center before dying. Police say they are searching for a four-door black sedan and at least four individuals and will increase patrols outside the Ellicott Complex. Students are told that there is still no danger to the university community and to call UPD with any information they may have.
Saturday, Oct. 15 by 8:30 a.m.: Police tape is removed from the scene.
Morning of Saturday, Oct. 15: UB proceeds with its previously scheduled Open House for prospective students but cancels residence hall tours for the day.
Saturday, Oct. 15 at 11:36 a.m.: Police announce in a statement that the victim was Tyler Lewis, a 19-year-old Buffalo State College student from Baldwin, NY. UPD also asks for help identifying a “person of interest,” a college-aged white male with light brown hair, a medium build, a mustard-colored shirt covered in blood and several cuts on his face, including a large diagonal laceration across his forehead. Witnesses report that he left the area in a black four-door sedan. Police also state that the incident “likely stemmed from a physical altercation between several individuals who most likely knew each other.”
Saturday, Oct. 15 at 12:05 p.m.: UB President Satish Tripathi sends an email to the UB community in which he summarizes the incident, thanks those cooperating with UPD’s investigation and extends his “sincerest condolences to the victim’s family and friends, and to the entire Buffalo State community.”
Saturday, Oct. 15 at 12:29 p.m.: Buffalo State College President Katherine S. Conway-Turner informs The Spectrum that Lewis was a sophomore majoring in pre-business administration and that the college’s Student Affairs team is in contact with Lewis’ roommates and family.
Sunday, Oct. 16 at 4:17 p.m.: UB spokesperson John DellaContrada informs The Spectrum that “there isn’t anything new to report from UPD’s investigation,” reiterates that police are “diligently” investigating and thanks witnesses who have “come forward with information helpful to the investigation.”
Monday, Oct. 17 at 1:06 p.m.: UPD announces in a statement that “no additional updates are available” and stresses that it has been at least 30 years “since anything similar occurred on campus.”
Tuesday, Oct. 18: UB announces in a statement that UPD is working with local law enforcement and the Erie County District Attorney’s Office in their ongoing search of the suspect.
Wednesday, Oct. 19: UPD announces that it has “made significant progress in identifying individuals involved” and that increased patrols at North Campus residence halls will continue through the weekend.
Grant Ashley is the editor in chief of The Spectrum. He's also reported for WBFO, WIVB and The Buffalo News. He enjoys taking long bike rides, baking with his parents’ ingredients and recreating Bob Ross paintings in crayon. He can be found on the platform formerly known as Twitter at @Grantrashley.