SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- A man was stabbed and critically injured in a massive fight at Levi's Stadium during the CONCACAF Gold Cup game between Mexico and Qatar Sunday night.
On Monday night, the Santa Clara Police Department released two images saying detectives are looking for a man who has been identified as the suspect and a woman who is a person of interest in the stabbing.
According to Santa Clara police, officers responded to the incident just before 9 p.m. and when they arrived they found a man with a "critical" stab wound near his collarbone area. He was taken to the hospital but his condition is unknown at this time.
Police say based on witness statements and video footage, detectives determined the victim was stabbed during an altercation with the suspect who then fled the scene.
The suspect is described as a Hispanic man between 25 to 35 years old, with short dark-colored hair, a thin mustache and a thin beard. He was last seen wearing a green-colored Mexican national team soccer jersey. Police say the suspect was with a Hispanic woman with dark-colored hair and a similar Mexican national team soccer jersey.
Santa Clara police say if you recognize the suspect or person of interest to please contact Detective Sergeant Doug Gerbrandt at (408) 615-4823. Those who wish to remain nameless can leave a message on the SCPD Anonymous Tip Line at (408) 615-4TIP (4847).
Levi's Stadium stabbing victim describes attack
A fight that left Emmanuel Diaz Leal with serious wounds.
"I think it was luck or because of God I'm here," Diaz said.
The 30-year-old is grateful to be alive. He is recovering in the hospital and spoke with our media partners at Univision, saying he is origionally from Mexico but lives in San Jose and works construction.
Diaz described the moment when he was stabbed during the fight, saying he was leaving when people began throwing beer. He said a colleague of his was attacked and it was everyone against everyone.
"He tried to stab me and I grabbed his hand," Diaz said. "We both fell to the ground. When I was on the ground he moved it up. He stabbed me here and on the other side."
Diaz says he was stabbed below his neck but above his heart.
"If he would've hit me lower or above," Diaz said. "It was God or luck because if he would've hit me here I don't think I would've been able to breathe or swallow and I can do those things now."
Police to review safety procedures before next Levi's Stadium event
People who saw the fight say it happened toward the end of the game.
Richmond resident Gabriela Ceja went to the game with her boyfriend and friends. She said there were multiple fights, but this was one was the worst.
"At first, I thought it was a fist fight but then saw someone else who was putting, applying pressure on the guy's chest and that's when it hit me that he got stabbed," Ceja said.
Ceja said the fight went on for a couple minutes before law enforcement stepped in. She thinks people should be more conscious of kids and families around.
"These games - we're supposed to enjoy them not leave with sadness or worried about someone's health," Ceja said.
As the investigation continues, the focus shifts to the next event at Levi's Stadium - a soccer match between Barcelona and Juventus on July 22. SCPD Public Information Officer Lieutenant Cuong Phan says police are not sure how a knife made its way into the stadium. But he says the department will make changes, if needed, to try and prevent something like this from happening again in the future.
"We constantly re-evaluate what went well and what we can do better," Lt. Phan said. "And we're always looking forward and making sure that we reexamine our practices to ensure that we're providing a safe environment for our attendees."
Levi's Stadium and CONCACAF sent the following statement ABC7 News Tuesday:
"Ensuring the safety of our guests is our highest priority. We are aware of the incident that took place at Levi's Stadium on Sunday and are cooperating with local law enforcement in their ongoing investigation. We wish the victim a speedy recovery, and are grateful for the quick work of local police in managing the situation."
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