Weeks after teen is murdered, Sodus grieving over second stabbing death

Zackary Dwello (Provided photo)

Sodus, N.Y. (13WHAM) So far, no suspects have been arrested in the case of Zackary Dwello, the 17-year-old senior from Sodus Central who was stabbed and killed at a Newark park over the weekend.

Dwello's death comes about five weeks after Alyssa Taft, a fellow senior at Sodus Central High School, was stabbed and killed. In that case, police say Taft's ex-boyfriend is to blame.

Newark Police Chief Dave Christler tells 13WHAM about two dozen investigators are actively working Dwello's case. As police search for answers, those close to Dwello say they're not sure why he would have been at that Newark park late Friday.

"He had a lot of friends, but he only hung out with a select few," said Chance Burke, a longtime friend.

Burke says he's also not sure why someone would want to kill his friend.

"He just has no reason for people to not love him and care about," said Burke. "He gave everyone a reason to be his friend."

Burke and other friends of Dwello describe him as someone who cared deeply for his family and friends.

"He was a really outgoing person; he tried his best at everything he did," said Burke. "He never gave up on himself, always believed in others, always saw the good in others and he was just a very hardworking, dedicated person."

Around Sodus on Monday, residents were dealing with the more recent loss of Zackary Dwello, which came came just weeks after the death of Alyssa Taft.

"Everyone knows one another, so when something like this happens, it really is a tragedy," said resident Sean Hanagan. "Not just once, but twice in about a month. It's too bad, I wish we didn't have to go through this."

Another resident we spoke to, who didn't want to be identified, said she used to work with the Sodus Central School District, and she knew Alyssa Taft.

She said the crimes would be hard enough to deal with anywhere, but have been especially tough on the small Sodus community.

"These are kids that I know, this type of thing shouldn't be happening," she said. "Losing her was bad enough, and now to have a second child taken… 17 years old, that's just way too young."

Anyone with information on Zackary's murder is encouraged to contact CrimeStoppers at (585) 423-9300.

Chance Burke set up a GoFundMe page to help the family cover Zackary's funeral expenses.

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