15 Year Old HS Hoop Star in NJ Murdered in Drive-By Shooting
15 year old Armoni Sexton was a rising star in the New Jersey basketball scene – ranking #2 for Class of 2018 kids in New Jersey by NJHoops.com. On February 14th, the 6’7 freshman scored a career-high 41 points to go with 10 rebounds, 6 blocks and 5 steals in his final game of the season for Patterson Charter.
On April 18th around 8:3o PM, Armoni along with 3 friends were victims of a drive-by shooting near Rosa Parks Blvd and Godwin Avenue. The 4 were taken to St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center and Armoni was pronounced dead at 11:55 a.m. the next day. The other 3 victims are expected to survive.
The devastating news comes less than a year after a 12 year old girl was shot & killed on a scooter on the same road.
“It’s not even a year since our situation happened with our daughter, and now this,” said the girls father. “Kids are not supposed to die before their parents. It’s heart-wrenching.”
Ja’Quaye James, a friend and AAU teammate of Armoni, talked to the media about the promising path Armoni was on.
“He could dribble like a point guard, he could shoot, he could rebound. To me, he was like another Andrew Wiggins. He was a high-level Division I player. He could’ve made it big.” “He was changing for the better. He switched his whole life around and he was going down the right path. Then something like this happens. You can’t really explain it.”
The violent act on a minor is tough to explain but the constant and accepted violence in one area is even harder to explain. Across the street on Goodwin Ave, where Armoni was shot, is a wall with the words “Death Avenue” painted on it.