Donnell M. Phelps, a freshman agriculture engineering technology major from Marshallville, was fatally stabbed on the campus of Fort Valley State University on Tues., May 3, 2016. (Credit: Fort Valley State University)

GBI: Student fatally stabbed on Fort Valley’s campus as he aided others

A Fort Valley State University freshman was fatally stabbed on the middle Georgia campus as he tried to help women who were being harassed by a former student, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.

The former student, 24-year-old Joseph Anthony Scott of Fort Valley, has been identified as the suspect in the Tuesday attack, agent J.T. Ricketson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The slain student, Donnell M. Phelps of Marshallville, got involved when three women were leaving the campus cafeteria, Ricketson said.

“[Scott] was being offensive … touching [the women] in a very inappropriate way,” Ricketson said.

Phelps came to their aid and Scott stabbed him multiple times before leaving the scene, Ricketson said.

On his way out of the main gate, Scott stopped at a guard station where campus public safety officer Ernest Johnson was stationed, the Telegraph of Macon reported.

Johnson, who did not know about the stabbing, opened the door. Scott then stepped in and stabbed him, Ricketson said. His injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Students and university personnel eventually subdued Scott, who is in custody at the Peach County jail on charges of murder, aggravated assault and possessing a knife while committing a felony.

In a statement, Fort Valley State President Dr. Paul Jones said he was deeply saddened by the senseless violence.

“My heart and the hearts of the entire Fort Valley State University community go out to the Phelps family,” he said.

Fort Valley State is about 105 miles south of Atlanta.

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