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Suspect pleads not guilty in fatal stabbing that happened as onlookers watched and took video

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Soon after school let out on Monday, a deadly fight broke out at a strip mall near Oceanside High School in Nassau County, New York. A group of teenagers looked on as Khaseen Morris, a 16-year-old student, was assaulted and stabbed in the chest. Some took out their phones and documented the fight on social media, but no one stepped in to help him.

Morris died from his wounds after being taken to the hospital, according to Detective Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick of the Nassau County Police Department.

Police announced that 18-year-old Tyler Flach has been charged with second-degree murder. At his arraignment Thursday afternoon, he pleaded not guilty and was ordered held without bail.

Flach's attorney, Edward V. Sapone, said his client maintains his innocence.

"He took the responsible step of self-surrendering to eventually clear his name," he said. "At the appropriate time we will release vital information about what happened that's not captured on video and that completely changes this case. Until then, we ask the community to reserve or judgment and pray for those who are suffering."

At a press conference on Tuesday, before any arrests had been made, Fitzpatrick said it was a "prearranged" fight over a "girl and a perception of who she might be dating or who she might be hanging with at this time."

"That dispute boiled over here, where a group of six to seven males charged at the victim and his couple of friends, and during that melee, stabbed him," Fitzpatrick said, standing in front of the strip mall where the fight took place.

He estimated there were between 50 and 70 kids there at the time and said several of them had come forward with information.

Fitzpatrick said he didn't know what to make of the number of bystanders who failed to assist Morris. "Kids stood here and didn't help Khaseen. They would rather video this event. They videoed his death instead of helping him," he said.

Morris' sister Keyanna described him as "good pure soul" who would walk into a room "just smiling" and make "everyone so happy."

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The youngest of four siblings, Morris liked skateboarding and dying his hair, his sister told CNN.

Morris had just started his senior year at Oceanside, making new friends, after attending school in Freeport, a village on Long Island, where his sister said he'd been unhappy.

"This is the happiest I've been in years," he told his mother on Friday, according to his sister.

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Keyanna, through tears, described watching video of her brother's death.

"He just laid there in his blood and nobody helped him," she said.

The steadiness of the video, focused on her dying brother, pained her.

"That's just sick," she said. "Who would just stand there and watch a kid in blood?"

Memorial services for Morris will be held on Sept. 28, according to his sister.

A GoFundMe account has been set to assist the family with funeral expenses.

Oceanside School District Superintendent Phyllis Harrington said in a video posted Thursday that the district is doing "everything necessary" to protect students and staff. She also asked that parents talk to their children about social media use, cautioning users not to "engage in spreading rumors." CNN has reached out to the school district for comment.

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said in a statement that additional police officers would be assigned to patrol Oceanside High School and neighboring schools. "I want to plead with all our residents — not just our young people: If you see someone in serious danger, please use your phone to get help — not likes and shares," she said.

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