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University of California-Davis student fatally stabbed

DAVIS, Calif. (CBS, KYMA/KECY) - A second brutal stabbing took place at a park in Davis Saturday, and this time, the victim was a 20-year-old UC Davis student/Davis High alum.

“I think it’s unfair for anyone’s life to be taken, but especially someone who has their future ahead of them, and they are so young," said Karan Brar, a recent UC Davis graduate.

UC Davis senior Karim Abou-Najm was biking home from an award ceremony for his research work on Saturday when he was stabbed to death on this very path in Sycamore Park.

“It’s weird to think I’ve travelled that path probably 100 times, and tragedy can happen anywhere," said Megan Acarregui, a UC Davis senior.

Sometimes even in a place where you least expect it, like less than a mile away from your home.

“I was actually shocked because I was just here last Sunday with my granddaughters and I have taken them regularly to play here at Sycamore Park," said Rafael Gacel-Sinclair, a Davis resident.

Set to graduate

The brilliant 20-year-old was set to graduate with a degree in computer science in just 10 days.

“He was a really great guy, he was really intelligent, did research, had a really great future, he wanted to move to new York as well," said Kristin Mifsud, another UC Davis senior.

Family and friends said he already had a full-time job lined up with Amazon and was doing research to create glasses for the blind.

“Murders don’t really happen here especially one with such a tragic circumstance," Mifsud added.

Now many UC Davis students fear for their own safety.

"Everyone’s really scared. I have seen a lot on social media that no one even wants to go to school," Mifsud explained.

Second stabbing in three days

Sycamore Park is less than a mile away from UC Davis. It’s surrounded by neighborhoods and an elementary school.

“He had so many honors. He was going to a bright future, and it was just taken away from him," Brar expressed.

This is the second deadly stabbing in Davis in less than three days. 50-year-old David Breaux, well-known in the community for preaching compassion, was stabbed to death in Central Park on Thursday.

“I did not expect my senior year for any of this to be happening especially in Davis," Mifsud expressed.

Grieving not one, but two victims

A community is now grieving not one, but two victims to stabbings.

“It doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman, both of these people were men. People just have to be more vigilant," Gacel-Sinclair explained.

A family, now planning a funeral for Abou-Najm, instead of a celebration for his future.

“We are still kids and still very naiive. We go around like and think we are unbreakable, but one moment later, it could be the end we all just have today," Acarregui concluded.

Article Topic Follows: California News

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