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Photo by Suzanne Monteverdi/QNS
Photo by Suzanne Monteverdi/QNS
Department of Education Deputy Chancellor Elizabeth Rose addresses reporters on April 4.

Updated April 4, 6:15 p.m.

The three teenagers charged with allegedly stabbing a 16-year-old classmate at a Flushing high school on Tuesday morning got into a verbal argument before the violence started, authorities said.

The teenagers got into a fight with the victim in a hallway on the first floor of John Bowne High School, located at 63-25 Main St., at approximately 10:45 a.m. on April 4, NYPD Queens South Chief David Barrere said at a press conference at the 107th Precinct stationhouse in Fresh Meadows later on Tuesday.

Based on a preliminary investigation, Barrere said, the incident was linked to a “prior verbal dispute between the students.” Authorities do not believe the incident was gang related at this time.

NYPD School Safety agents assigned to the school was alerted to the fight, which broke out nearby the Dean’s office.

“The school safety agents immediately intervened and were able to separate the students involved in the altercation and take them into custody,” Barrere said. He was joined at the press conference by Deputy Inspector Scott Henry, commanding officer of the 107th Precinct, and Deputy Schools Chancellor Elizabeth Rose.

Authorities discovered the victim with stab wounds to his left torso. He was rushed to NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens hospital in Flushing and is listed in stable condition.

The suspects, two 18-year-old boys and one 17-year-old boy, were taken into custody, where they remain. Their identities have not yet been disclosed and charges are pending.

A three-inch, black folding knife was recovered at the scene. A school dean sustained minor injuries while trying to intervene in the altercation, an NYPD spokesperson said.

Rose noted that John Bowne High School school does not have full time metal detectors, but does have “unannounced, random scanning” that is conducted throughout the school year.

“We will work with the NYPD and follow our protocol to assess whether there should be a change in scanning ” Rose said.

The investigation is ongoing.

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