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High School Basketball Player Killed In Drive-By Shooting In Paterson

PATERSON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A high school basketball star in Paterson, New Jersey was killed and at least three other people were wounded in a drive-by shooting this weekend.

According to police, the shooting happened around 8:30 p.m. in the vicinity of Rosa Parks Boulevard and Godwin Avenue.

Authorities said the victims were standing near a liquor store when a burst of gunfire came from a vehicle that quickly fled the scene.

High School Basketball Player Killed In Drive-By Shooting In Paterson

Armoni Sexton, 15, was killed. Sexton was a top scorer and rebounder on the varsity team at the Paterson Charter School for Science and Technology.

The school posted several tweets Sunday afternoon expressing sadness over the loss of Sexton, saying "We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Armoni Sexton last night."

It was followed up by another tweet that said "On behalf of the PCSST community, we extend our thoughts, prayers and condolences to the Sexton family."

Those who knew Sexton, including his cousins and basketball coach, said he was not involved in any gangs in the city, 1010 WINS' Gary Baumgarten reported.

Cousin Pamela Holly Davenport said the family is now turning to faith.

"Another young kid is gone. No answers to why. Everybody's hurt," she said. "We're gonna just continue to trust God and believe God that he's going to give comfort to his mom and the rest of us."

One of Sexton's basketball coaches at a summer basketball camp said the teen was dedicated to the sport and to his teammates, CBS2's Valerie Castro reported.

"Or course he was a serious competitor, of course. But he kind of had this no nonsense kind of demeanor when he was on the court," said Brandon Jones. "The times off the court he was definitely cracking jokes and smiling with the rest of his teammates and all that good stuff."

On Sunday, the teen's friends gathered at the place where Sexton was shot to put out candles and hang a banner for everyone to sign, Castro reported.

Sexton's friends said he was headed for great things in his future, and his love for basketball was known to everyone.

"Everybody from the hood said it, he was going somewhere in life for real," said Kyle Jones. "He had a chance to do something with his life."

"A lot of people liked him and he played basketball. He was an all star," said Devin Kyle.

Police are still investigating a motive for the shooting. There has been a series of shootings in Paterson over the last few days, but it remains unclear if this shooting was related to any others.

Davenport said the violence needs to stop.

"This is what you see, a liquor store on every corner, somebody selling drugs, somebody gunning each other down over stupid, petty stuff," she said.

The other three shooting victims are expected to survive, police said.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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