At least nine people were shot — including a 21-year-old college basketball player who was killed — after gunfire broke out early Monday morning at a gathering in New York. Harlem.
The New York Police Department said that officers responded to reports of a shooting at about 12:40 a.m. at East 139 St. and Fifth Avenue. When officers arrived, they found five people with gunshot wounds on the boardwalk along the FDR Freeway, just below the Madison Avenue Bridge, and were transported to a local hospital. Four other victims were also taken to the hospital.
“The weekend is Father’s Day. It’s been a weekend where people are supposed to be able to have fun with their families, but we’re here to give New Yorkers an update on how many people were shot early this morning.” , NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said at a news conference Monday morning. “The individuals who are encouraged to take responsibility for this are precisely the people our officers are fighting every day to keep our city safe.”
In total, seven men and two women were injured in the early morning incident. While the male victim has not been identified by police pending notification from his family, a spokesman for his university identified him on Monday as 21-year-old Darius Lee. Police said the victim was pronounced dead at the hospital after suffering a gunshot wound to the body.
Jeff Sutton, media relations director for Houston Baptist University’s athletics program, confirmed to The Daily Beast that Lee was “one of the victims” of the deadly incident. He added that Lee, a rising senior at a Texas school majoring in sports management, was a star on the basketball team.
“Next season will be his senior year and he’s the top return scorer in our conference,” said Sutton, noting that he had no further details on the shooting. on Monday.
In a separate statement to The Daily Beast, Houston Baptist University confirmed that Lee will graduate in December and was recently named the school’s Robbie Robertson Male Student-Athlete of the Year. He is also “the second team selected at the All-Southland Conference for the 2021-22 season and leads the Huskies in scoring and rebounds and sixth nationally in steals per game.”
“He is a very good guy, with a bright future ahead both on and off the field. Unfortunately, yet again, yet another example of senseless gun violence that seems to be plaguing our country right now, and we are all praying it will end,” said Athletic Director of HBU, Steve Moniaci said in the statement.
Boys’ High School St. Raymond, where Lee graduated in 2019, also confirm the grim news of his “insensible passing” that left their community “heartbroken and devastated.”
“In addition to being a famous basketball star, he is an extraordinary human being and such an active young man, successful in school, on the field and in life,” the Bronx said in a statement. an Instagram post on Monday included a photo of Lee. “These senseless acts of violence need to stop… such a tragedy.”
One witness told WABC-TV that she was sitting in her living room when “sporadic gunfire” began to ring. The Outlet also reported that the ages of the victims ranged from 21 to 42. New York Daily News reported that the incident happened at a Father’s Day cookout hosted by a local rapper and the shooting broke out while he was filming the video.
“It was like, ‘Standby, barb, prong! And then it stopped and picked up again, “Brum, brum!” You know, there were a lot of shots,” the witness told WABC. “At first I thought it was fireworks. and then I thought, “No, that can’t be.”
While authorities are still investigating the motive behind the shooting, NYPD Deputy Superintendent Brian McGee said he believes the incident happened at a barbecue or “something of that nature.” He added that a handgun was recovered at the scene, but declined to provide any information on any potential suspects and called on any witnesses to provide information.
McGee added: “We know there are a lot of people there.