In case you managed to avoid this horrible news over the holiday weekend, on Saturday a 9-year-old boy was fatally stabbed in a Harlem housing project while playing a video game with a 25-year-old man with a history of mental illness. What's even more distressing is that the suspect, Alejandro Morales, has a history of mental illness, a lengthy rap sheet, and spent Christmas Eve pacing in a Times Square movie theater ranting about he "felt like killing someone."
Morales's mother tells the Post, "I don't know what happened with my son, but it was not about a video game." But police say the victim, fourth grader Anthony Maldonado, was spending the weekend with his uncle when Morales—one of his uncle's roommates—plunged a knife into the boy's chest after an altercation involving a Tony Hawk skateboarding video game. The boy's uncle says Anthony knocked on his bedroom door at 3:30 a.m. saying he'd been stabbed, and then collapsed. He died at a hospital about an hour later; an autopsy shows he had a perforated left lung and carotid artery.
Morales, who is being evaluated at Bellevue, is charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon. His mother says that after Morales's death threats during the Christmas Eve screening of Sherlock Holmes, he was sent to a treatment facility, but released because there weren't enough beds.
UPDATE:Morales's brother Christopher claims his brother told police that a voice in his head told him to stab the boy. In an interview with NY1, Christopher Morales says, "It wasn't over a game. I put the kid in the room to lay down and I went down to the store to get us something to eat. And then I got the phone call. And I see him there on the floor."