1 dead in Montgomery High School stabbing

3 mins read

Two students were stabbed by another student inside an art class at Montgomery High School. 

According to the Santa Rose Police Chief, one of the victims, Jayden Pienta, 16, died in the hospital after the fight. 

Classes at school were canceled and the campus will be closed for the rest of the week. 

At around 11:11 a.m., the Santa Rose Police Department was notified of the fight. Officers arrived at the school four minutes later. 

Investigation reveals that the two 16-year-old juniors entered the art classroom to start a fight with a 15-year-old freshman. 

Police Chief John Cregan said there were twenty-seven students, one teacher, and three teaching aides inside the classroom at the time. 

“They entered the classroom and engaged in a physical altercation with the (freshman). All three of them are male students here at the campus,” Cregan said.

The teachers broke up the fight, but it reignited and the freshman pulled out a knife. According to Cregan, it was a 5-inch-long knife, described as a switchblade. 

The freshman stabbed one junior three times in the chest and stabbed the other once in the hand. Cregan said the stabbed students fled out of the classroom to the nurse’s office and were “alert and conscious” when police arrived and transported them to a hospital. 

“Unfortunately, one of the students … passed away at that hospital,” Cregan said. “The other student is being treated for his injuries and is expected to survive.”

Over thirty SRPD officers were on the campus, but the student armed with the knife slipped away. Later on, at 11:51 a.m.,  police found the freshman hiding next to a church in a creek. He was unarmed and was taken into custody. 

Cregan said the three students involved had previous physical altercations. “We are going to get to the bottom about the motive of this, what led up to this,” he said.

School district superintendent Anna Trunnell said. “This is truly a sad day. The tragedy that happened here today is heartbreaking. Right now our focus is on meeting the immediate physical and emotional needs of our students and staff. Our campus followed emergency protocols in order to keep students and staff safe.”


Charlene is a Bay Area journalist who hails from the small community of Fresno. Drawing from her experience writing for her college paper, Charlene continues to advocate for free press and local journalism. She also volunteers in all the beach cleanups she can because she loves the water.