Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police are investigating the shooting death of an East Mecklenburg High football player late Sunday at a house party.
Police identified the victim Monday as Christian Isaac Allen, 18. The shooting took place in the 400 block of Kelford Lane near James Boyce Park. No arrests have been made.
Police said they were called to the home at 10:57 p.m. Sunday and arrived to find a male outside the residence with a gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at Carolinas Medical Center.
Early information indicates that a party was being held at the home at the time. Neither the victim nor the suspect live at the Kelford Lane home, police said.
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The suspect and victim got into an argument while at the party, police said. The altercation escalated and resulted in the shooting while Allen and the suspect were both inside the home.
Multiple teens told Charlotte’s WSOC-TV station that they were at the house for a bonfire. They said a group of people most of them didn’t know showed up after hearing there was a party.
Witnesses said Allen and one of the people in that group got into an argument after Allen asked about some belongings that disappeared. Then, about five gunshots rang out.
A neighbor who asked to remain anonymous told WBTV, the Observer’s news partner, that she heard gunshots and saw Allen’s friends trying to keep him alive.
“They threw him in the back of the pickup truck, and next thing you know, someone was doing chest compressions. I just heard kids screaming and crying,” she said.
East Mecklenburg football coach Barry Shuford said Monday that Chris Allen was a well-liked student and athlete at the school.
“Chris was a hard-working kid that had a great motor on the field and played great for us,” Shuford said. “He was thinking about walking on and playing at Appalachian State.”
Shuford said the 6-foot, 190-pound Allen made all-conference in the Southwestern 4A Conference after his sophomore and junior seasons.
Shuford said he’s lost players before, including a Garinger High football player and another who played for him at Butler High School. He said they all hurt the same.
“It’s tough,” the coach said. “You spend so much time with those kids and all of sudden, you look forward to them graduating and going out on their own, and they’re gone, just like that.
“You get to know somebody and you’ve got players who come back 20 years later and talk about what you meant to them, and that kid’s just gone.”
Classes at Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools were out Monday for a teacher work day, so Shuford wasn’t able to address the team about Allen’s killing. Even though the players know what happened, Shuford said Tuesday’s team meeting will be emotional and hard.
“I just can’t imagine,” Shuford said, “with as close a team as we’ve got, how tough it’s going to be for us (Tuesday).”
Homicide detectives were canvassing the neighborhood around the shooting scene Monday and interviewing witnesses.
Anyone with information is asked to call 704-432-TIPS and speak directly to a Homicide Unit Detective. The public can also call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600 or visit the Crime Stoppers mobile app website at charlottecrimestoppers.com/.
Staff writer Bruce Henderson contributed.