A Minnesota man has been arrested for the stabbing death of a teenager, in an incident described as a stabbing spree that left four others injured while river tubing in Wisconsin.
Nicolae Miu, 52, was charged on Monday with one count of first-degree homicide and four counts of attempted first-degree homicide for what he calls an act of self-defense after reportedly losing his phone in the water at Apple River on Saturday, MPR News reported.
The attack left 17-year-old honor student Isaac Schuman dead, according to authorities.
“We are all heartbroken and devastated beyond words that his future has been tragically and senselessly cut short,” the family told KARE 11 in a statement.
Suspect Claims Self-Defense After Fatally Stabbing Teen and Injuring Four Others
Miu allegedly told investigators that “they attacked me” and that he was in “self-defense mode” when he drew a knife and stabbed the teens, per MPR News.
BREAKING: Nicolae Miu has been charged with first degree murder and four counts of attempted first degree murder in the mass stabbing on the Apple River in Somerset, WI.
— Nick Streiff (@nickstreiff) August 1, 2022
Miu was water tubing with his wife and several friends when he ran into the group of teens while snorkeling and looking for a lost phone that was in a waterproof container, the outlet reported.
That’s when he encountered the group of teens, who allegedly accused him of “looking for little girls” and being a “child molester,” as several members of the group surrounded him after he grabbed the teen’s water tubes, according to KARE 11.
A criminal complaint states that video from the incident, which was not immediately released, shows as the group of teens move towards, with one shoving Miu as he falls into the water.
Miu stabbed the teen before he could shove him again, and then went about stabbing the others, per the criminal complaint.
Witnesses Say Suspect Punched Young Woman Prior To Deadly Altercation
Several witnesses told police that Miu punched a young woman in the face prior to the deadly altercation, with another witness claiming he swam up to the group and looked at them “really weird and sketchily.”
Family members confirm the Apple River stabbing victim, who was killed on Saturday, is 17-year-old Isaac Schuman. He was looking forward to his senior year at Stillwater High School. Read the family’s full statement below. @kare11 pic.twitter.com/6xUhjk5AMH
— Heidi Wigdahl (@HeidiWigdahl) August 1, 2022
Despite Miu’s claims of self defense, prosecutors say he could have left before the situation escalated, according to KARE 11.
Life Is “Down The Tubes” Miu Says, Held On $1 Million Bail
He reportedly told authorities that his life is now “down the tubes,” with his his lawyer calling the incident a “chance encounter.”
Miu was located 90 minutes after the attack after witnesses shared photos of him with authorities, the sheriff’s department said Sunday.
He’s being held on $1 million bail at his first court appearance on Monday and could face life in prison if found guilty, MPR News reported.