Footage Shows DC Crowd Flee Prior To Deadly Juneteenth Festival Shooting Getty Images | Spencer Platt

College basketball star, Darius Lee, was killed by a stray bullet during a shooting that flared up on Monday at a Harlem Father's Day cookout.

Lee, 21, was reportedly shot in the chest. "Darius always said he wanted be on TV. He got his wish. But in a wrong and bad way," his father, Eric Lee, 50, said on Monday. "He didn't deserve this."

Lee had received a full scholarship to Houston Baptist University, where he played guard and forward for the Huskies. He was set to graduate in December and had just returned home to Harlem two weeks ago for summer break.

"Greatest kid ever," is how Lee was described by his former coach, Chris Williams. "This is like a Harlem angel. I want my 5-year-old to be like Darius. I'm not just saying this." Lee was recently honored as the Houston Baptist's male athlete of the year.

Lee was among the five people found shot on the footpath along the FDR Highway, just under the Madison Avenue Bridge, around 12:30 a.m. According to New York City Police Department Chief Brian McGee, commanding officer of Detective Borough Manhattan North, gunfire erupted in the area of East 139th St and 5th Avenue where a large group had gathered.

All five victims were rushed to the hospital by EMS, while another four victims were taken to the hospital by other means. The victims consisted of seven men and two women. Most of the victims were in their 20s.

The event was organized by local rapper Rich Rhymer, who was shooting a video when rival groups started shooting at each other. The holiday has a special meaning for the rapper as his father died while he was in prison on a weapons charge. Meanwhile, it was not yet confirmed what brought the shooting. One handgun was recovered at the scene.

"The emboldened individuals responsible for this are exactly who our officers are battling every day to make our city safe," Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said at a pre-dawn press conference near the scene.

New York City shootings, while still up by 38% compared to two years ago, are down 12% this year compared to the same period in 2021.

This is a representational image. geralt/Pixabay