Charter School Student Fatally Stabbed

September 24, 2009

photo of Robert ValenzuelaOn Thursday, September 24, 2009 at approximately 11:30 am, Mesa Police officers responded to a report of a stabbing at the Pinnacle Charter High School located at 151 N. Centennial Way in Mesa. When officers arrived they found the victim, 15-year-old Eric Hill, with multiple stab wounds. The victim was transported to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

At this time the investigation has revealed that the victim and the suspect were engaged in a verbal dispute. The verbal dispute escalated into a physical altercation and the suspect stabbed the victim multiple times. The incident was witnessed by several students and statements indicate that the suspect is known by some of the students at the school. Pinnacle High School administration verified that the suspect is not a student at the school.

Based on statements and follow-up investigation, it appears that this incident was gang related. Both the victim and suspect are members of criminal street gangs. The suspect has been identified as 17-year-old Robert John Valenzuela, Jr.  Valenzuela (photo) has not been located and there is probable cause for his arrest.

Suspect Description:  Native American/Hispanic male, 5' 8" to 5' 9" tall, 190 lbs., brown eyes and short black hair.




Mesa Police Department
Media Relations Office

PO Box 1466
Mesa, AZ 85211

Join us on Facebook!Follow Mesa PD or our Homeland Security Unit on Twitter!Mesa PD Blog!Photos on FlickrWatch us on YouTube!Sign Up for Alerts from Mesa PD