Teen suspect arrested in Rashawn Williams case

A teenage boy was arrested Wednesday in connection with the fatal stabbing of 14-year-old Rashawn Williams in San Francisco’s Mission District Tuesday evening, police said.

A 14-year-old boy was arrested on Wednesday afternoon in connection with Rashawn’s death, but the teen’s name is not being released because he is a juvenile, police said.

San Francisco police Officer Gordon Shyy said Thursday morning of the homicide:

“It does not appear to be random.”

Rashawn attended Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory school as a freshman, the school’s assistant principal for student life, Christine Buell, said. Buell said Rashawn attended freshman orientation and then seven days of his first year of high school before he was killed.

Police said the teen was stabbed at about 6:50 p.m. Tuesday in the 2900 block of Folsom Street, about a block from Garfield Square. According to school officials, Rashawn was stabbed inside a convenience store that he had entered with a member of his family.

Rashawn’s mother transported him to California Pacific Medical Center’s St. Luke’s Campus and paramedics transported him from there to San Francisco General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Rashawn had signed up to play on the school’s freshman football team. He entered the private Catholic high school with a 4.0 GPA from Buena Vista Horace Mann K-8 school, according to Buell.

The school’s principal, Gary Cannon, said he had spoken with Rashawn from time to time and found him to be “a sincere and respectful young man.” A prayer service for the school community and families was held Wednesday afternoon following classes, according to Buell.

Counselors are being made available to members of the Sacred Heart Cathedral community following the teen’s tragic death, Buell said. Michelle Forshner, communications director for the high school, said Rashawn was bright and motivated.

Forshner said, like most students at the school, he was accepted into the competitive high school based on his academic excellence. Members of the community have placed flowers, candles and balloons outside the market where Rashawn was stabbed.

Anyone with information regarding the case is asked to contact police at (415) 575-4444 or to text a tip to TIP411 with “SFPD” at the start of the message.