The Stillwater High School community is mourning the death of a 17-year-old student who was one of five people stabbed over the weekend during an attack while tubing on the Apple River in western Wisconsin.
Principal Robert Bach said in an e-mail to families following the death Saturday of incoming senior Isaac Schuman that “we extend our deepest sympathy to the family and everyone impacted directly or indirectly. … During this time of grief, we ask you to keep the family in your thoughts.”
A 52-year-old man from Prior Lake was arrested and remains jailed Monday morning pending charges. The Star Tribune generally does not identify suspects before they are charged.
St. Croix County District Attorney Karl Anderson said that “if charged this morning, he would appear at 1 pm [Monday] for [an] initial appearance.”
The victims and the suspect were all tubing down the river around 3:45 pm, Sheriff Scott Knudson said. The attack happened just upstream from the Hwy. 35/64 bridge in Somerset Township, close to the Minnesota border, and northeast of Stillwater.
“Deputies, as well as citizens, began providing medical care to the victims,” read a Sheriff’s Office statement.
The Apple River has long been a popular summer recreational destination for Twin Cities residents.
The surviving victims were all in stable condition, ranging from serious to critical injuries to their torso or chest, Sunday’s statement from the Sheriff’s Office read. They include two men from Luck, Wis., one 20 and the other 22 years old; a 24-year-old woman from Burnsville, and a 22-year-old man from Elk River. Their identities have yet to be released.
“Thank goodness a witness had taken a photo of him,” Knudson said. “Another witness located him at the exit of the tubing area, where he was taken into custody.”
“We don’t know yet who was connected to who, who knew each other or what precipitated it,” Knudson said. “It’s a tragic day.”
Two victims were flown to a hospital and two were taken by ground ambulance. Schuman was transported to Lakeview Hospital in Stillwater, where he was pronounced dead.
In his communication to high school families, Principal Bach added, “The death of a classmate, even for those who didn’t know them well, will impact each student differently, and all reactions need to be addressed with great care and support. We encourage you to talk with your children about this sad news and help them to process their feelings.
“Please let us know how we can continue to help you and your children as we work through this difficult process together.”