Calvin Riley, a 20-year-old college student, was shot dead on Saturday night in an apparently random attack that has left his family and friends reeling and investigators scrambling to gather further information.
According to reports, he was playing Pokémon Go in San Francisco’s Aquatic Park on Saturday night when, shortly before 10pm, he was shot in the chest by an unknown assailant. Paramedics attempted to revive him, but Riley was pronounced dead at the scene.
ABC News reported that one of the friends there with him told police they had noticed someone suspicious watching them from the top of a hill overlooking the park, but that they did not get a good look or see if that was where the shot came from, since it was dark and they were looking at their phone screens.
Riley, who would have been entering his second year at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, CA in a few weeks, was originally from Massachusetts and was a talented baseball player with a promising future as a pitcher.
“He was a fun Irish kid and had that East Coast sense of humor that everybody loved to be around. He was loved by all of his teammates,” his coach, Reed Peters, told The Record.
“He had a great arm and great baseball instincts, being a coach’s son, he knew the game real well. He was a bulldog on the mound, just a guy you wanted on the mound with the game on the line.”
The waterfront park, part of the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, is a popular location with locals and tourists alike, and violent incidents there are unusual.
“Every five years or so we see something serious, but normally we’re just dealing with car break-ins. This is generally a safe place,” Lynn Cullivan, the park’s public information officer, told The Record.
According to Sgt. Robert Jansing of the U.S. Park Police, which is leading the investigation in cooperation with San Francisco police, the shooting “makes no sense.”
He told the San Francisco Chronicle that the park would have been bustling at that time and that “there’s a good chance someone saw something.” Police are reviewing surveillance footage and asking anyone who may have witnessed the shooting to come forward with information.
Investigators have not commented as to whether the augmented reality cell phone game, which was released in July, could have had a role in Riley’s death.
The eldest of three siblings, Riley was originally from the Boston suburbs but had moved to the west coast before high school, later graduating from Junipero Serra High School in San Mateo. His father, Sean Riley, worked as an assistant baseball coach at Santa Clara University.
Riley’s cousin, Gabriel Antonio Morales, has set up a GoFundMe page to help with the costs of the funeral and burial.
“Due to this cruel world we live in, a part of my family was taken from us. When we got a call at 4:30 am saying he's gone I thought I was having a bad dream,” he wrote.
Anyone with information about the shooting is being asked to call the Police Department's anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or text a tip to TIP411 with SFPD at the start of the message.