CHULA VISTA, Calif. (KGTV) -- A close family friend is speaking out after a 15-year-old boy was stabbed at a Chula Vista birthday party while defending his friend.
Devin Griffiths was stabbed at a birthday party on the 900 block of Maria Way in Chula Vista on January 31.
Reid Schneider, a friend of the family, says the party was first advertised on the social media platform Snapchat.
Schneider says there was a doorman at the party as well as security guards.
Witnesses say an argument between Devin’s friend and another teenager escalated into a fight outside. Devin, who was not involved in the original fight, intervened to help his friend when he was stabbed.
"They started hurting Devin’s friend. Devin jumped in and he was beat down pretty bad and stabbed a few times," Schneider said. "He had some severe brain damage. I guess he was considered dead on scene and they kind of brought him back."
Devin underwent at least five surgeries within the first 12 hours, according to Schneider. He died on February 16 after being taken off life support. "There was a lot of times where we thought there was hope and and unfortunately there was too much damage," Schneider added.
Police told 10News Tuesday that the teen “passed away with his family at his side.”
A candlelight vigil was held for the teen Wednesday night on the Helix High campus, which is where Devin went to school. A GoFundMe has also been set up to help the family. "He was a kid that has gone through a lot more obstacles than a lot of other kids and adults as a 15-year-old. And he was striving. He was striving and he was going to make something of his life," Schneider said.
Police say the suspect group is believed to consist of eight to 15 men and women between the ages of 17 and 20. All the suspects are still at-large.
Investigators believe witnesses may have used their cell phones to record the stabbing and are asking anyone with information or video to come forward.
Anyone with information is asked to call Chula Vista Police at 619-691-5178 or the Crime Stoppers anonymous tip line at 888-580-8477.