Father of boy 16, who stabbed lacrosse star to death apologizes to the victim’s family
The father of the teen charged as an adult in the murder of Connecticut high school lacrosse player James McGrath has apologized to the 17-year-old’s family.
Raul Elias Valle, de Milford, 16, is accused of stabbing McGrath to death during a fight outside a Shelton house party on Saturday.
valley was arrested early Wednesday, four days after the drunken assault that left Fairfield Prep student McGrath dead and three others injured.
The 16-year-old was charged with murder and three counts of first-degree assault and is being held on $2 million bond, police said.
Valle’s father, Raul, was seen outside a Derby courtroom on Thursday with his head tucked under a black suit jacket, saying quietly: “I’m sorry to the family.” courtant.com informed.
Valle’s defense attorney, Jake Donovan (pictured), told reporters he would not discuss the case during the investigation.
McGrath, who had been a standout lacrosse player for private Fairfield Prep, was found stabbed to death outside Shelton’s home Sunday night, where police say a party was in full swing.
James McGrath (pictured), who had been stabbed once in the chest, was taken to a local hospital where he later died.
Valle’s defense attorney, Jake Donovan, told reporters he would not discuss the case during the investigation.
“Obviously, this is an unspeakable tragedy for everyone involved, and it would be irresponsible of me to comment before I’ve had a chance to review all of the evidence in the case,” Donovan said outside the courtroom. ‘I appreciate your interest and concern, but again, I need to see the full file.’
Valle’s case has been transferred to Milford court where he will be tried as an adult with the next scheduled hearing set for June 7.
According to an arrest warrant, Valle attended a house party held in Shelton for students from St. Joseph High School in Trumbull on Saturday, which he attended. greenwichtime.com informed.
At some point in the night, a group of students from Shelton High School arrived and a fight broke out between groups from opposing schools.
After the fight, the Shelton High students split up to go to another party on Laurel Glen Drive, where Valle and his other friends followed them.
The residence where the murder occurred, which police said was not McGrath’s, is approximately six miles from the suspect’s hometown of Milford. It is unclear who owns the property.
His school, Fairfield Prep, an all-male institution that costs $23,000 a year to attend, confirmed the junior’s death in a statement.
A GoFundMe was created for the family (pictured) to help cover the cost of their son’s funeral. The fundraiser has raised nearly $125,000, far exceeding its goal of $15,000
After Valle and his group were told to leave, a fight broke out on the front lawn and several people were stabbed.
A witness said that after the fight ended, Valle got up and walked to his car and McGrath was standing nearby but not pursuing him, according to the warrant.
“(Valle) said then he turns around and takes his knife and stabs (McGrath) right in the stomach and pulls him out,” Detective Richard Bango said, citing the witness in the warrant.
McGrath, who had been stabbed once in the chest, was taken to a local hospital where he later died.
The 17-year-old, better known to his classmates as Jimmy, was a standout lacrosse star at Fairfield Private School, according to his obituary, where he was loved by everyone.
Contacted Wednesday for comment on Valle’s arrest, McGrath’s father, Kevin, told The New York Post he was too distraught to speak.
“Just give me a little time to process everything,” McGrath told the newspaper.
The school held a private vigil for the teen (pictured), where more than 1,000 turned out
McGrath (pictured with his sister) played lacrosse and soccer at the prestigious private school.
Fairfield Prep, a prestigious all-male institution that costs $23,000 a year to attend, commented on the high school student’s death in a statement released Monday, writing: “Jimmy was a beloved student and athlete on the football teams. and lacrosse, and will continue to be. be forever a member of the Prep Brotherhood.’
The school held a private vigil for the student-athlete on Sunday, where more than 1,000 people gathered to honor his life. The school said it would offer grief counseling to students.
“In the days ahead, students and faculty are counting on the support of the school’s leadership team, Jesuit priests, campus ministers, Prep counselors, and Fairfield University to offer help as they mourn this tragic loss,” the school announced Monday.
“Jim was described by many as a wonderfully happy person with a big heart who was a loving friend to many,” the tribute read. “He loved his school, Fairfield Prep, and was an outstanding athlete in every sport he chose.”
“God bless Jimmy McGrath, Class of 2023, forever a man to others, forever a son of Fairfield Prep,” said President Christian Cashman.
A neighbor, who lives across the street, said it was “sad to see what is happening to our teenagers” and said she was “afraid” to send children to school when they were of legal age.
“They’re making so many mistakes and wrong decisions,” Christina Louis-Fin told FOX 61.
Friends and family of the McGraths began a GoFundMe page to help his parents Kevin and Margaret pay for their son’s funeral.
So far, the fundraiser has raised nearly $125,000, far exceeding its goal of $15,000.
DailyMail.com has attempted to contact the family for comment.