Video shows the moments before fatal stabbing of student near Woodrow Wilson High

A diptych of images of the same man with long black hair and beard in black leather jacket.
Images were released of the suspect in two stabbings in Los Angeles on March 3.
(Los Angeles Police Department)

Los Angeles police released video Tuesday of the moments leading up to a fatal stabbing of a student near Woodrow Wilson High School last week and asked for the public’s help in identifying the suspect.

The incident was reported around 3:55 p.m. Friday in the 4500 block of Valley Boulevard in El Sereno, about half a mile from the Woodrow Wilson campus.

Footage shows the suspect walking through a parking lot toward a sidewalk. As the suspect exits the parking lot, he can be seen pulling out a large knife and holding it in both hands and looking at a spot just out of frame, at which point the footage ends.


The man stabbed a 17-year-old boy, who died at the scene, police officials said.

The victim was identified on the Los Angeles County coroner’s website as Xavier Chavarin. The teen was described by his mother, as well as an L.A. city councilman, as a straight-A student, a loving son and a “great big brother.”

Police believe the attacker went on to stab a 33-year-old man later that night in the 5400 block of Valley Boulevard.

The man approached the victim and stabbed him multiple times without saying anything, police officials said in a news release. The victim survived the attack.

The suspect is described as a male with long, wavy black hair and a long beard and can be seen in the video wearing a black jacket, a black T-shirt and black pants. The suspect’s vehicle was described as a black Honda CR-V made between 1996 and 2001.

The mother of Anthony Avalos was arrested Friday and charged in the murder of the 10-year-old boy, who authorities believe was the victim of child abuse.

June 29, 2018

Laura Frias, Xavier’s mother, told KNBC-TV that her son had been waiting for her outside a restaurant when he was stabbed, the station reported.

He was a straight-A student who was set to graduate in a few months, KNBC said.

On Tuesday, the Los Angeles City Council adjourned in Xavier’s memory.

Councilmember Kevin de León, whose district includes El Sereno, said the teen had a promising future and was a “great big brother” and a great son.


“He loved playing Legos. He loved playing with his Xbox. He loved fast cars, and he loved drawing,” De León said.

The councilman told his colleagues that the Woodrow Wilson High School community was devastated.

Xavier’s mother graduated from the school and was pregnant with Xavier when she received her diploma, De León said.

Nery Paiz, the head of the union for school administrators in L.A. Unified, called the killing “a senseless tragedy.” Paiz told The Times that the incident underscored the challenge of keeping students safe on the way to and from school.

L.A. schools Supt. Alberto Carvalho visited a memorial that had sprung up for Xavier on Monday and said the stabbing was “an awful event.”

“When something goes wrong with a kid like that, the entire community should bow its head. We have to think about what’s happening in Los Angeles,” he said.


“We have a distraught principal who knew this student, who has done everything right,” Carvalho said.

Gregorio Verbera, Woodrow Wilson principal, said in a message to students and parents on Sunday: “On behalf of our entire school community, I want to offer my deepest condolences to those who are impacted by this loss, including the student’s family, friends and teachers.”

Anyone with information about the suspect is advised to call LAPD homicide detectives at (213) 996-4116.

Times staff writers David Zahniser and Howard Blume contributed to this report.