North Bay

Teen Accused of Fatally Stabbing Man at Sonoma State University

The victim and suspect were not students at the North Bay university, police said. They were believed to be visiting friends on campus.

A 19-year-old Santa Rosa resident is accused of stabbing a 26-year-old man to death on the Sonoma State University campus Sunday, according to police.

The stabbing occurred inside of a residence at the Sauvignon Village residential community, but the victim and the suspect were not students at the North Bay University, police said. They were believed to be visiting friends at the time of the stabbing.

"All of us at Sonoma State are shocked and saddened by this tragic event," Sonoma State University President Judy K. Sakaki said Monday. "Our hearts go out to all who have been impacted."

The suspect was identified as 19-year-old Tyler J. Bratton, according to Lt. Tim Lyons of the Petaluma Police Department, which is leading the investigation. Police have yet to publicly name the victim.

Police said the suspect and victim knew each other, but the depth of their relationship is still being investigated.

"This was not a random act," Lyons said. "It appears that everybody was acquaintances so I want to assure that the campus community, that there's no further threat to the students here, the faculty here."

Sonoma State University police learned at approximately 5:53 p.m. Sunday that a male had been stabbed at the residential community. At roughly 6:06 p.m., the victim was determined to be dead.

A motive for the stabbing was not immediately known.

The homicide is the first on the campus in the 57-year history of Sonoma State University.

The campus remains open following the stabbing, Sakaki said. Finals are taking place this week, but accommodations are being made available for any student impacted by the incident.

Witnesses or anyone with information regarding the stabbing is asked to call 707-778-4372 and ask for Detective John Silva.

Contact Us