CHOWCHILLA, Calif. (KFSN) -- A small memorial of candles, flowers, and athletic cleats now marks the spot where Kelly Mallik Dupree was shot to death around 12:30 Saturday morning.
Action News has confirmed the 18-year=old was a student at Merced College and previously played football at Merced High.
Madera County Sheriff Jay Varney says, "You graduate high school, your whole life and the world is ahead of you to enjoy and engage, and in this case, this person's life has been cut short."
Investigators say it appears Dupree and a 19-year-old man were sitting in a parked vehicle outside of a house party on Avenue 20 near Road 14 when they were ambushed.
Witnesses reported at least two male suspects walked up and opened fire, then ran to a nearby car and drove away.
One neighbor said her family members heard the shots and what sounded like street racing.
She adds, "They didn't think too much of it until the next day when I took my kids to school, and it was all blocked off, and that's when we learned exactly what happened."
Dupree died at the scene, and someone dropped off the other victim in an alley behind the Chowchilla Police Department. He was rushed to a hospital and is expected to survive.
Sheriff Varney says, "I don't think this is a shooting that other residents in the area should be concerned about. It really seems it was focused on the people in the vehicle for whatever reason. We don't have an absolute on that yet."
Less than 36 hours earlier, another man was shot multiple times while driving on Avenue 24. The 35-year-old made it to a home near Fairmead Boulevard for help. He was flown to a hospital and is now recovering.
Authorities say it may have started as a road rage incident, but the investigation is ongoing. At this point, they do not believe the two shootings are connected, and they say the violence is very unusual for the rural area around Chowchilla.
Sheriff Varney says detectives are looking into whether drugs or gangs were a factor in either shooting, but they do not want to jump to any conclusions. Anyone with information can make provide tips anonymously through Crime Stoppers by calling 559-498-STOP.
Murder victim near Chowchilla identified as Merced College student