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Adult 'trespasser' fatally stabs California high schooler on campus, authorities say

A 52-year-old man was arrested on a murder charge in connection with the 15-year-old's death, police said late Monday.

A 52-year-old man was booked on a murder charge late Monday after a California high school student was killed by a “trespasser” who entered the campus and stabbed her, officials said.

Police late Monday announced that Anthony Gray, 52, was arrested in connection with the death of the 15-year-old student.

"Detectives believe this appears to be a random act and they are trying to determine why this student was targeted," police said in a statement, adding an active investigation remained underway.

Stockton Deputy Police Chief Eric Kane said earlier Monday that a suspect was in custody.

Neither the suspected motive nor the man’s relationship with the student was immediately clear, Kane said at a news conference. Nor was it clear where exactly at the school the stabbing occurred.

School District Superintendent John Ramirez Jr. identified the man as a "trespasser." He doesn't appear to be the parent of a student, district spokeswoman Melinda Meza said in an email.

The stabbing happened at Amos Alonzo Stagg High School shortly after 11 a.m. when a man arrived in a vehicle, Kane said.

He entered the school through a gate and stabbed the girl multiple times, Ramirez said. 

He didn’t identify the girl, who was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

A school district police officer “was right there immediately and was able to do his job and help prevent that from continuing,” Ramirez said.

“It happened so quickly that they weren’t able to stop it, but they were able to detain him and take him into custody,” he said.

The school, north of downtown Stockton, was placed on lockdown, Ramirez said.

He said district officials were scheduled to meet and re-evaluate security protocols.