WEST HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - A community is mourning as police continue to look for a motive after a boy allegedly stabbed his sister to death and wounded his mother.
It happened on Monday at a home on Stoner Drive in West Hartford.
Police have not released the names of those involved, however, Mayor Shari Cantor identified the family as the Murphy-Curtin family.
The mother of the children called police to report what had happened on Monday afternoon.
The 12-year-old boy, police said, allegedly attacked his 12-year-old sister and mother.
The sister died at St. Francis Hospital.
The boy was taken to Connecticut Children's Medical Center in Hartford for a minor injury. Channel 3 was told that he remained there on Tuesday.
Late Tuesday afternoon, West Hartford police said the 12-year-old was arraigned and charged with murder with special circumstances, and first-degree assault.
The mother remains in stable condition at St. Francis Hospital.
Both the parents of the children and school officials said they attended Sedgwick Middle School.
At this time, the chief state's attorney's office is determining whether or not the suspect will be charged as an adult.
The family released a statement after Monday's incident in which they said their family, friends and community are all suffering.
“An unspeakable tragedy and if folks are looking for a way that they can be of service, I’d encourage them to pray for them," said Chuck Coursey, who is representing the family.
The school district and the town are providing grief counselors for those affected.
According to state laws, a suspect that is younger than 14-years-old will not be treated as an adult no matter the crime.
Since the suspect is 12-years-old, he could likely face a less severe punishment.
Police remained on the scene into Tuesday afternoon, including a West Hartford police evidence truck.
Those who know the family said they're trying to grapple with the news.
“At the schools [Tuesday] morning, all the moms were chatting about it," said Molly Manix, a nanny to a family in town. “It’s so shocking to see it right in your own background, in the town.”
In a message from the superintendent to the district, families were told that mental health professionals would be on site Tuesday and in the coming days, particularly over the holiday break.
"In difficult times, we do all that we can to support our families, students and staff members in dealing with crises," said Thomas Moore, superintendent, West Hartford Schools. "Please keep this family, their friends, and all of our children in your thoughts and prayers."
In times of tragedy like this one, a local doctor recommended that parents get involved as well.
"It might be good to check in with your kids and say 'you know this happened, how are you? Are you ok?'" said Dr. Laura Sanders, psychologist at the Institute of Living, Hartford Hospital. "To do sort of a check in, but if your child really gives you an indication that they’re fine they don’t need to talk about it then I would sort of let that lie."
On Tuesday, school officials sent a five-page letter to parents offering tips about supporting one another and how to help children cope with such a loss.
Read the full letter here.
The West Hartford superintendent said there will be town-wide counselors available for families, parents, and staff members from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. on Tuesday at the Town Hall.
The Westminster Presbyterian Church released a statement about the death of the young girl.
"Like many in the West Hartford community, we are deeply anguished over the recent tragedy that took place in our town yesterday. Our prayers are with the family affected, with the young people and parents in our community who are struggling to make sense of it all, and the emergency response workers, teachers and counselors who are working to find words of comfort and offer safe space for all of us. We know also that this event is not the only tragedy that has happened in our town in recent days and weeks. And so our prayers go out to all who are grieving and hurting during this time."
The church will be holding a vigil on Tuesday night at 6 p.m. for the girl and the family.
There will also be a Longest Night Service on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Cantor and other town leaders held a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the services being offered for those grieving.
"We're praying for the health of the injured and we are here to provide whatever support we can to anyone going through it, and especially those who are closest to the family," Cantor said.
She also released a statement on Tuesday.
Today we are mourning the loss of a beautiful young lady and praying for the recovery of her mother. Our special community of West Hartford is in pain.
Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers. Let us give them the space, privacy, and time to grieve and heal.
We will do all we can to provide support and help for the family, our students, teachers, neighbors, friends and the entire community.
I have received many calls and texts asking how people can help. Thank you. Hug your loved ones and friends a little tighter. Be generous with your time and your heart. If you are moved to make a donation, please consider giving to organizations that have as their mission to help families in crisis including the Bridge Family Center, Town That Cares, as well as faith and community organizations.
With a heavy heart, I wish our whole community peace and love.
Police said the investigation is ongoing.