Teen accused in Pinecrest stabbing transfers to detention center ahead of court date

A teenager accused of stabbing a student at Pinecrest High School on April 28 was booked into the Moore County Detention Center on Thursday ahead of an upcoming court date after being transferred from another facility. 

Former Pinecrest student, Christopher Tarter, with a listed address in Gibsonville, N.C., who just turned 18 years old, is under a $2 million secured bond on charges of attempted first-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, and possession of a weapon on school property, according to Moore County Detention Center’s website. 

Avery Slatcher, a junior at the time, was left in critical condition and required several surgeries after being stabbed 18 times. School officials said it was an isolated incident.

While it is not normal protocol to identify a minor, the identity of Slatcher was made public by social media and fundraising efforts. A fundraising event through GoFundMe has raised $86,383 of a $75,000 goal.

At the May 1 school board meeting, Mike Metcalf, chief officer for academics and student support services, said the stabbing happened in the back auditorium parking lot between 8:30 and 8:45 a.m. There was a lot of activity in the parking lot at the time.

Metcalf relayed the entire event to the school board. He said the suspect was dropped off in the parking lot, and Slatcher was in the parking lot getting out of her car.

When she got out of her car, the suspect allegedly stabbed her several times with a large knife. She fought back, and the suspect allegedly tried to get into the girl’s car, but a student backed his car against her car, so the suspect could not get inside. The suspect ran into the woods, according to Metcalf.

The assistant principal and a counselor saw the disturbance, and the assistant principal radioed for assistance and emergency services while five students reacted to help the girl. One student took off his shirt to provide pressure to the multiple lacerations, and other students called 911.

The assistant principal and a teacher took over the medical care, and the principal replaced the student who was applying pressure, said Metcalf.

The school nurse arrived with an automatic external defibrillator kit and trauma kit, and a career education teacher in the medical field arrived, and they packed the deep wounds.

School resource officers and a counselor ran into the woods and apprehended the suspect without resistance. Tarter was taken to a juvenile detention center in North Carolina.

The weapon was near Slatcher, Metcalf added.

EMS arrived and, with the school nurse, applied tourniquets to the girl. The school nurse traveled with EMS to the hospital.

An assistant principal and staff controlled parking lot traffic and cleared the scene, providing easier access for the police.

Another assistant principal applied a modified lockdown to the campus.

The district’s critical incident response team arrived to help as counselors.

Tarter has a court date on Dec. 11 and is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Photo of Christopher Tarter via Moore County Detention Center.

~Article by Sandhills Sentinel reporter Stephanie M. Sellers and staff.

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