x
Breaking News
More () »

Houston Baptist University athlete killed in Harlem shooting, 8 others injured

New York native Darius Lee was a senior on the men's basketball team.

HOUSTON — An early-morning shooting Monday at a gathering in Harlem left a man dead and eight other people wounded, New York City police said.

According to the university, the 21-year-old man who died has been identified as Darius Lee, a member of the Houston Baptist University men's basketball team.

Lee was a senior forward for HBU out of Harlem. He played his high school ball at St. Raymond High School for Boys in the Bronx, according to his bio on HBU's website.

The university said Lee was on track to graduate with his bachelor’s degree in December and was recently named HBU Robbie Robertson Male Student-Athlete of the Year. 

He was a second team All-Southland Conference selection for the 2021-22 season and led the Huskies in scoring and rebounding and was sixth in the nation in steals per game. 

Coach Ron Cottrell statement

HBU men's basketball coach Ron Cottrell released the following statement: 

“We are devastated. Darius was a remarkable young man who loved the Lord, his mom, his family, his teammates, his friends and his entire HBU family. 

"We are in shock and cannot wrap our heads around this news. My heart breaks for his mom, his sister and his entire family, and for our basketball team. The only thing we find comfort in right now is knowing where Darius is. He is in the arms of Jesus… we know that as fact. And we will see him again some day. 

"As great of a basketball player as he was, he was an even better person. I can’t even think of basketball right now. I can only think of what a light Darius was during his short time on earth. He was a joy to coach and we loved him so much. 

"Please keep his mom, sister and family in your prayers, as well as our HBU basketball family, during this very difficult time.” 

HBU Director of Athletics Steve Moniaci statement

HBU Director of Athletics Steve Moniaci also released a statement:

“Our prayers are with his family first and most importantly, but also with his friends, coaches, and teammates. He was a very fine young man who had a very bright future in front of him both on and off the court. This is unfortunately, yet again, another example of the senseless gun violence that seems to be plaguing our country right now and we all pray it will cease.” 

What happened

Officers responded about 12:40 a.m. to reports of a shooting on a footpath along the FDR Drive and found five people shot, police said, citing preliminary information. They were taken to hospitals for treatment.

Four other people who were shot also arrived at hospitals for treatment, police said. A 21-year-old man was pronounced dead at a hospital, police said, and the wounded included six other males and two females.

“This Father’s Day weekend is a weekend where people were supposed to be able to enjoy themselves with their families,” Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said at a news conference.

The investigation was ongoing Monday and police didn’t immediately have details about the gathering or what may have led to the shooting.

Information about possible suspects wasn’t immediately released, but police said on Twitter that a gun was recovered from the scene. Tips were being sought from the public as part of the investigation.

The shooting comes amid national concern over gun violence and as the U.S. Supreme Court is considering whether to strike down a law that makes it difficult to legally carry a handgun in New York. Shootings are down 11% so far this year in New York City, compared to last year. Murders are down 12% but are still at their second-highest level since 2012.

KHOU 11 on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Paid Advertisement