Man Charged in Rockford Attack That Left Four Dead, Including Teenager

Authorities are still working to determine the motive behind the Rockford, Illinois stabbing attack.

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Man Charged in Rockford Attack That Left Four Dead, Including Teenager
ockford Police Chief Carla Redd talks to reporters on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, after multiple stabbings occurred on the city's southeast side near Cleveland Avenue. Kara Hawley/Rockford Register Star

A man has been charged in connection with a tragic attack that rocked the city of Rockford, Illinois, leaving four people dead, including a teenager, and seven others injured. Police revealed that some of the victims were stabbed during the incident, which unfolded on Wednesday afternoon.

Authorities identified the suspect as Christian Soto, 22, who faces multiple charges including murder/intent to kill and home invasion. Soto is scheduled to appear in court on Thursday at 1:30 p.m.

The attack unfolded within about 20 minutes, starting with a home invasion near the intersection of Florence Street and Eggleston Road. According to Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana, a young woman attempting to flee was stabbed in the face and hands, sustaining serious injuries. A Good Samaritan who came to her aid also fell victim to the attacker’s knife.

As the assailant continued his rampage, chaos ensued across multiple locations in Rockford, including Holmes Street, Winnetka Drive, and Cleveland Avenue. Police and paramedics received a flurry of 911 calls reporting the unfolding violence.

Rockford Police Chief Carla Redd confirmed that four people lost their lives in the attack, with one person critically injured and four others hospitalized. While not all victims suffered stab wounds, authorities confirmed there were no gunshot victims.

Ruth Gallagher, a Rockford resident, expressed the devastation felt by many. “It’s just devastation for all of us,” she said. “It’s a blur. It’s just a nightmare.”

Among the victims was a 15-year-old girl, a 63-year-old woman, a 49-year-old man, and a 22-year-old man. Witnesses reported that a U.S. Postal Service mail carrier was also among the deceased, potentially struck by a pickup truck during the chaos.

Despite the arrest of the suspect, authorities are still working to determine the motive behind the attack. Mayor Tom McNamara issued a statement expressing shock while reiterating the city’s commitment to supporting impacted residents and investigating the incident thoroughly.

“We are shocked by another horrific act of violence against innocent members of our community. We can report that the suspect is in custody and the threat has been neutralized. Now that he is in custody, our primary concern is ensuring that our community members directly impacted by this violence are supported throughout their healing and recovery. We are working with community partners to provide support and services quickly and conveniently to those residents. We will announce those details soon.”


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