A University of Tampa student – and New York native – was fatally shot over the weekend after he tried to get into a stranger’s car by mistake, authorities said.
Carson Senfield, a 2021 graduate of Orchard Park High School, celebrated his 19th birthday just a day before his tragic death on Saturday, according to his family.
“We spoke with him two days ago, he was celebrating his birthday with friends on Friday night,” heartbroken dad Darren Senfield told Tampa’s Channel 2.
“He loved his people, whether they were at WNY or his people in Tampa. He was such a generator of good vibes.
Police said Senfield was hanging out with friends on South Howard Avenue before calling an Uber back to his home on West Arch Street around 1 a.m.
After exiting his Uber, Senfield apparently attempted to enter another vehicle with a man sitting in the driver’s seat.
The driver, who did not know Senfield, shot him in the upper body and the teenager was pronounced dead at the scene, cops said.
The Tampa Police Department said the shooter was cooperating with law enforcement.
The University of Tampa announced Senfield’s passing in a statement Saturday afternoon.
“UT administration is deeply saddened to report that a UT student was killed early this morning near the intersection of W. Arch and N. Munro streets,” the statement read.
“Our deepest condolences go out to the student’s family and friends, and to all those affected by this incident. The University appreciates all members of the community and mourns this tragic loss.
University freshman Gino Secchiano told Fox13 the campus was still reeling from the news.
“It’s a pretty small campus where people know each other, and you don’t think things like that can happen here, but it can,” he said.
“It’s a tragedy and I’m so sorry for his family and everyone. My heart is with them.
Senfield’s sudden death also rocked his hometown of Orchard Park, where he was a noted high school hockey and basketball player.
“It saddens me greatly to inform you that the Orchard Park community has suffered a tragic loss as Carson Senfield, a 2021 graduate of Orchard Park High School, passed away today,” Superintendent David said Sunday. Lillec in a statement.
“Given Carson’s wide circle of friends and the fact that both of Carson’s siblings attend OPHS, the Orchard Park School District recognizes that his passing has a significant impact.”
Darren Senfield described his son as “such a bright light to everyone” who texted and called his mother every day.
Regarding the events surrounding his son’s death, Senfield says the family is confident “the details will play themselves out.”
“We don’t have our son, we are grieving, we are heartbroken, we are devastated,” he said.
“It was a senseless tragedy that we’re still trying to come to terms with, but at this point it doesn’t really matter, we don’t have our Carson with us.”
A GoFundMe honoring Carson has already raised over $104,000, about $79,000 more than its original goal of $25,000.
“We will lead this [money to] a scholarship at a later date to ensure kids like Carson…have a chance to go to college,” said Darren Senfield.
New York Post