Teen Arrested in Connection to Murder of Barnard College Student

A 14-year-old was arrested in connection to the murder of Barnard College student Tessa Majors in New York City last December, authorities announced on Saturday.

Rashaun Weaver was indicted by a grand jury and taken into custody in Manhattan Friday night. It is believed that Weaver handled the murder weapon, The New York Times reported. He will be tried as an adult.

In announcing the arrest, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. said at a press conference that Weaver was charged with two counts of second-degree murder and several counts of robbery.

The district attorney also said: "The allegations are really laid out in heartbreaking detail. The complaint paints a picture of the video evidence, blood evidence, smartphone evidence, iCloud evidence, the witness identification, and the defendants' own statements that were rigorously collected and examined prior to this arrest and indictment."

WATCH LIVE as Police Commissioner @NYPDShea and Manhattan District Attorney @ManhattanDA make a law enforcement announcement. https://t.co/x6q6Zk7mzK

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"Sadly, it cannot bring back this young woman, this student, this victim," New York Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said about the arrest. "That is something the best, the most impartial investigation simply cannot do. What we can do is say that we are confident that we have the person in custody who stabbed her, and that person will face justice in a court of law."

Tessa Majors murder case
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 15: (R-L) Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance holds a press conference alongside NYPD Chief Dermot Shea and NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison on February 15, 2020 in New York City. The three announced that Rashaun Weaver, a 14-year-old suspect in the December murder of 18-year-old Tessa Majors, had been arrested and indicted the previous evening. Yana Paskova/Getty Images/Getty

Citing the defendant's age, Vance said that special care will be taken while prosecuting the suspect. "We're dealing with a 14-year-old, and what I want to say as the district attorney is we will be very careful to safeguard all the rights that he has as we go forward with this case," Vance said.

Majors, 18, was murdered on December 11, 2019 in Morningside Park in Manhattan after three teenagers tried to mug her. After struggling with them, Majors was stabbed multiple times. According to Vance, Majors' final words allegedly were: "Help me. I'm being robbed."

Shortly after the incident, a 13-year-old suspect was arrested and charged with second-degree felony murder as a juvenile, according to the Times. He is not believed to be the one who fatally stabbed Majors but rather participated in the robbery that led to the murder.

"We've reached a major milestone with this arrest and the filing of the criminal complaint, but we're not here today, of course, to celebrate that," Vance said. "The killing of 18-year-old Tessa Majors was a heartbreaking tragedy that brought unimaginable loss to her family and friends. In different ways, it is a tragedy for the Barnard, Morningside Heights, and West Harlem schools and communities."

Updated 5:17 p.m. ET.

tessa majors
New Yorkers join Barnard college students for a candlelight vigil for Tessa Majors, a Barnard freshman who was murdered earlier in the week, on December 15, 2019 at the scene of the crime in Morningside Park in Harlem, New York City. On Saturday, a teenager was arrested for the murder. Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis/Getty