Photos: NYPD, Instagram.com
NYPD investigators questioned and released a 14-year-old suspect wanted in connection with the fatal stabbing of 18-year-old Barnard College student, Tessa Majors.
The unnamed suspect was located at a family member's residence in The Bronx, where he was hiding out until a bite mark on his hand healed.
The NY Post reports he was questioned by police and released Thursday without charges.
A 13-year-old suspect told investigators that Majors bit the 14-year-old suspect on the hand during the struggle. The 14-year-old allegedly stabbed Majors in the chest with a red handled knife. Feathers were seen floating from her down coat during the attack.
Police swabbed the suspect's mouth for DNA, but a preliminary test result was inconclusive, according to the Post.
The boy had a smirk on his face as he left his attorney's office in Harlem around 4:30 p.m. Thursday (The NY Post removed the photo of the suspect smiling).
The teenager joined a younger boy and a woman in her 30s. The woman cursed at a reporter and knocked a recording device out of his hand as they crossed 125th Street, according to the Post.
The trio climbed into a white SUV, idling at a curb in front of a water hydrant and sped off.
A third suspect, age 14, was questioned by police and released on Dec. 12.
Community leaders urged police to use caution to avoid a repeat of the 1989 Central Park 5 case. Five Black and Hispanic boys were arrested and questioned without attorneys present in the infamous Central Park jogger rape case.
An inmate later confessed to the crime, saying he acted alone.
Director Ava DuVernay was among those urging caution.
"Certainly, in the investigative steps, the department will be more cautious because of the attention that was paid to the Central Park Five — everything they do is under the microscope," she tweeted.
NY residents expressed outrage over the way the case has been handled so far.
One Twitter user wrote:
"There is No Justice Especially for the Dead In NYC
This 14 year old THUG Ran from the Police Was caught 2 weeks later They took his DNA &Released Him
They could have held him for 5 days but didn't. Crime is up police R frustrated from all this BULL."
Another user tweeted:
"tessa majors can be stabbed in a park in NYC - and her attackers can spend Christmas at home before being arrested and released..."
And a third user tweeted:
"This is not cool.. everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Specially kids... cmon.. if this kid is innocent then you just ruined his life. If he is guilty then let the cops do their job. Stop letting the public judge people."
Police Chief Rodney Harrison acknowledged the public's frustration in a tweet on Thursday.
"Although he has since been released to the custody of his attorneys, the investigation remains very active. Our detectives are the best at what they do and are committed to finding justice for all parties involved."