Baseball prospect shot in Yonkers – The Journal News | LoHud.com
Yonkers Police Department holds a news conference about the shooting of a young man in a Burger King parking lot, Sept. 18, 2015. (Video by Tania Savayan/The Journal News)
Mike Nolan, 23, a graduate ofÂ Saunders Trades and Technical High School, was shot twiceÂ in the parking lot of a Burger King at 826 Central Ave.Â just after 12:30 a.m.
Police were on the scene Friday morning,Â combing the parking lot of the Burger King which is near the exit ramp of the New York State Thruway.
Nolan was taken by ambulance to Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx.
Investigators were taking pictures of a black, four-door Mercedes with its driver’s side door open and Burger King bags strewn on the ground.
Yonkers Police Department Chief of Detectives Timothy Hodges said five or six shots were fired at the Mercedes, hitting Nolan in the head and torso. Hodges said Nolan was in “extremely critical condition” at the hospital.
“At this point, we believe he was an innocent victim,” Hodges said. “He’s been a friend of the City of Yonkers and a person of high regard.”
Hodges called the gun violence a “senseless tragedy.”
No arrests have been made.
Yonkers police believe a white or pale yellow, 2000-07 two-door Honda described by witnesses may be involved in the incident. Surveillance video and license plate readers in the area are being viewed,Â Hodges said.Â Police were looking into a possible connection to a dispute that occurred days earlier.
Several witnesses were interviewed by police Friday morning.
A near-by resident said young people often drag race down the service road that runs parallel to the Thruway.
Police examine a car at the scene of the shooting of Mike Nolan in the Burger King parking lot on Central Park Avenue in Yonkers, Sept. 18, 2015. (Video by GM Productions)
At the family’s home, Michael Maher, Nolanâs grandfather, told The Journal News: “We’re just waiting. They told us there is nothing we can do but wait.”
He said his grandson was breathing on his own.
The familyâs brick-front ranch house has an Oakland A’s sticker on the front door. It is decorated with numerous American flags, and a handwritten sign in the window notes International Police Day Sept. 12. In front is a basketball hoop.
Anthony Nicodemo,Â Saunders basketball coach,Â said heÂ had Mike Nolan and his twoÂ brothers, JoeÂ and Nick, on his team.Â
“We’re heartbroken,” he said in a brief phone conversation from Jacobi Medical Center, where he and others gathered to support the family. “We just can’t believe this happened.”
He saw Nolan’s family Friday night at a game in which Nick played.
“This is a family that has done so much for the community,” he said. “I’m hoping the community rallies around them.”
Chuck Alben, Nolan’sÂ former coach at Saunders, said he was too stunned to talk when reached by phone FridayÂ Â morning.
“I care for Mike very much,” he said. “A tremendously talented player. Wonderful family, they were at every game.”
Lefty pitcher Nolan, who standsÂ 6Â feet, 7 inches tall,Â played forÂ Oklahoma City University andÂ was selected in the 18th round of the 2014 Major League Baseball draft (552nd overall) by the Oakland Athletics to fulfill a lifelong dream. He had previously undergone Tommy John surgery, a common procedure for baseball pitchers that reconstructs the ligament in the elbow by attaching it to a tendon from another part of the body.Â Most recently, he was pitching for the minor leagueÂ Arizona Athletics, but has been on the restricted list since June of 2014.
Yonkers police investigate shooting of baseball star Mike Nolan in the parking lot of Burger King on Central Park Avenue in Yonkers, Sept. 19, 2015 (Video by Jane Lerner/The Journal News)