Grad Student Arrested for Killing Teen

Lawyer says stabbing was an act of self-defense during fight

Krishna A. Rao

Police officers (second from left and far right) question locals Saturday outside the Pizza Ring that was the scene of the death of Michael Colono early Saturday morning.

Friends and family searched for answers yesterday, after a Saturday morning stabbing left one Cambridge teenager dead and a Harvard graduate student in jail facing murder charges.

Cambridge police arrested Alexander Pring-Wilson, 25, at 8:30 a.m. Saturday after he allegedly stabbed 18-year-old Michael Colono during an early-morning altercation outside a Cambridge pizza parlor.

Colono was pronounced dead due to multiple stab wounds at 3:15 a.m, earlier the same day.

Pring-Wilson, a graduate student at the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, will be arraigned in district court this morning.

A lawyer for Pring-Wilson said that he acted in self-defense.

Details of the incident remain sketchy after two days of investigation.

According to Middlesex District Attorney spokesperson Emily LaGrassa, Cambridge Police Department (CPD) officers responded at 1:50 a.m. Saturday morning to a report of a stabbing outside Pizza Ring, at the corner of Western Avenue and Howard Street. The restaurant is less than a 15-minute walk from Mather House and the southeast corner of campus.

Officers did not find a victim on the scene, LaGrassa said Saturday afternoon. Police encountered Pring-Wilson, who they questioned and released.

But according to LaGrassa, Pring-Wilson had stabbed Colono only minutes earlier.

She said the incident began when Pring-Wilson approached a car driven by the victim and two friends outside Pizza Ring.

After Colono got out of the car, he and Pring-Wilson “had some kind of physical and verbal altercation,” LaGrassa said.

Police allege Pring-Wilson stabbed Colono five times to the upper body during the fight.

According to LaGrassa, Colono and friends drove away from the scene—not realizing he had been stabbed.

After friends discovered that Colono was experiencing breathing difficulties, they tried to drive him to a hospital, but got lost. An ambulance was eventually called, and Colono was brought to the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center where he later died.

According to LaGrassa, Pring-Wilson’s description matched the description that friends who witnessed Colono’s stabbing gave police.

Police tracked Pring-Wilson to his Somerville apartment where, according to LaGrassa, he was arrested. The Boston Globe reported yesterday that Pring-Wilson was arrested at the police station after he went there at officers’ requests.