Student, 20, shot and killed while on dream holiday

Brianne Tolj
·2-min read

A 20-year-old university student who had dreamed of going to New York City has been shot and killed during his first visit to the Big Apple.

Ethan Williams, from the US state of Indiana, was standing outside his Airbnb rental in Brooklyn about 2.30am (local time) on Saturday when he was hit by random gunfire, according to news station WESH2.

He was rushed to a nearby hospital but later died.

Police have not made any arrests in the shooting and said they believed the student was not the intended target, but an innocent bystander, the publication reported.

Ethan Williams, 20, from Indiana.
Ethan Williams, 20, from Indiana, was standing outside his Airbnb rental in Brooklyn when he was hit by random gunfire. Source: GoFundMe

The 20-year-old’s family told 13WTHR Mr Williams had dreamed of visiting New York since he saw the Spiderman movie.

“Ethan was living that dream on a trip to New York when he was struck by a stray bullet and killed,” they said.

He was studying film at Indiana University at the time of his death and was described to have “loved people, particularly those who were marginalised or hurting”.

“If he had the opportunity to say something to the shooter, we know that he would invite him for a cup of coffee and ask to hear their story. He would forgive without delay,” his family said.

Pictured is police at the scene where Ethan was shot. Source: CBS2
Police have not made any arrests in the shooting and said they believe the student was not the intended target. Source: CBS2

A GoFundMe has been created to help his parents with travel and transportation costs to bring his body home.

Indiana University issued a statement about the shooting to students and the faculty.

“It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the death of one of our students, Ethan Williams.

“Ethan died while visiting New York City with friends this weekend,” James Shanahan, dean of the media school, said.

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