‘Person of interest’ sought in New Jersey fatal stabbings

Neighbors hold hands in prayer after three people were killed and several others injured in a stabbing at a house in Newark, N.J. Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. The stabbings occurred around 4 p.m. Saturday at a Hedden Terrace residence. Essex County's major crimes task force and city police are investigating the stabbings. (Robert Sciarrino/NJ Advance Media for NJ.com via AP)
Neighbors hold hands in prayer after three people were killed and several others injured in a stabbing at a house in Newark, N.J. Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. The stabbings occurred around 4 p.m. Saturday at a Hedden Terrace residence. Essex County's major crimes task force and city police are investigating the stabbings. (Robert Sciarrino/NJ Advance Media for NJ.com via AP)

NEWARK, NJ (AP) — A New Jersey man already wanted on assault charges from last month was being sought Sunday as a “person of interest” in a weekend knife attack at a Newark home that left two children and a woman dead, authorities say.

Police were searching for 26-year-old Jeremy Arrington in their investigation of the Saturday afternoon attack that also left three people injured, Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray said at a news conference after the stabbings.

A possible motive for the attack has not been disclosed.

Arrington has not been charged in the stabbings, but is also wanted on charges of sexual assault and aggravated assault for an unrelated incident on Oct. 9, Murray said.

Prosecutors on Sunday released the names of the three who were killed. They said 8-year-old Aerial Little Whitehurst and 11-year-old Al-Jahon Whitehurst both died at a hospital shortly after the attack. A county spokesman said the two Newark children are related, but he declined further comment.

The three injured — a 29-year-old woman, a 13-year-old boy and a 13-year-old girl — remained hospitalized in critical but stable condition.

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka on Saturday called the attack “one of the most tragic and savage” he’s seen. The mayor pleaded for anyone with information to come forward, NJ.com reported.

“We have to get him immediately before he hurts someone else,” he said. “As long as he’s on the street, nobody is safe.”

Police have offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

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