FREDERIKSTED — A woman was on the phone with a 911 operator telling her that a former star basketball player was under attack — when suddenly she heard sounds like he was being shot to death on Thursday morning, authorities said.
Jonathan Adrian Fontenelle, 28, of Grove Place was positively identified by next of kin as the shooting victim, the Virgin Islands Police Department said.
The 911 Emergency Call Center received a report of shots being fired at the Louis E. Brown Villas at 7:48 a.m. Thursday, according to the VIPD.
“The witness told the 911 dispatcher that she was on the phone with the victim when she heard gunshot sounds through the phone,” VIPD spokesman Toby Derima said. “The victim then stated that he was being attacked.”
Officers traveled to the scene and found Fontenelle with gunshot wounds, Derima said.
Fontenelle was taken by ambulance to the Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center (JFL) where he later succumbed to his injuries, he said.
He was a former star guard for the U.S. Virgin Islands’ men’s basketball team who played in international competition for the territory in 2008-2009.
In the 2009 season, Fontenelle averaged 5.2 points per game, one rebound and 0.5 assists per game in Federation Internationale de Basketball Amateur (FIBA) championship play.
Meanwhile, people in the U.S. Virgin Islands expressed sadness on social media today about the loss of someone so gifted — and so young.
“It’s about one per week now,” Tetyana Hayes lamented from St. Thomas on Facebook.
Police spelled Jonathan’s name “Fontanelle.” But he himself on social media and FIBA on their website spelled his name “Fontenelle.”
The VIPD is appealing to the community for information into this and other open cases.
Please contact police with your information by calling 911, the Crime Tip Line at (340) 778-4950, or call anonymously to Crime Stoppers USVI at (800) 222-8477.