SACRAMENTO -- Police are investigating a pellet gun shooting that killed a Sacramento State University student around 3 a.m. Friday.
The shooting happened off campus at a home on Lycoming Court, about two miles away from the university's campus.
Authorities arrived and found a male adult who had been shot with a pellet gun. He was transported to a nearby hospital where he died from his injuries.
The university has identified the victim as Will Molina.
"We grew up together playing. He was like my brother," Vannesa Panych, a childhood friend of Molina's, told FOX40.
Family and friends are in disbelief that such a promising life was cut short.
"You can’t go on with your day," Panych said. "You’re just constantly remembering all of the good times and it just seems very unreal."
Neighbors say several people live at the home on Lycoming Court.
"What a sad thing for everybody," neighbor Linda Fea said. "Just young kids making choices and decisions that they can’t undo, that are going to affect them for the rest of their lives."
Police say Molina was at a party with other members of his Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity.
"It's a very tragic incident, however, for me to call it an accident, I can’t do that," Sacramento Police Officer Linda Matthew said. "So that’s where it’s going to come from the district attorney."
Neighbors say, aside from some noisy parties in the past, there hadn't been any issues at the house.
"There wasn't a lot of commotion in the court like when the parties get really wild, so we weren’t expecting this," Fea said.
University President Robert Nelson released the following statement:
To All Members of the Campus Community:
I am devastated to share the extremely sad news that one of our students, Will Molina, died after a pellet gun shooting at an off-campus gathering early this morning. Will was a business major with an emphasis in entrepreneurship. He graduated from Folsom High School, was an active member Pi Kappa Alpha, and was on track to graduate from Sacramento State this May.
I am heartbroken over the loss of this young man, and I know that the Hornet Family mourns with Will’s family. We will have grief counseling services available for everyone who needs support during this difficult time, and we will share information as it is available.
Our hearts go out to Will’s friends and family, and we are working with family on arrangements to honor his memory.
Robert S. Nelsen