How Did Danny Kelly Die? Professional Boxer Shot Dead In Front of Girlfriend and Kids on Christmas

Kelly was driving a pickup truck along St. Barnabas Road in Temple Hills when the other vehicle came and pulled up alongside his family's SUV and someone inside it opened fire.

A professional boxer from Maryland was shot dead in front of his girlfriend and three young kids in a possible "road rage" incident on Christmas, police said. Danny Kelly Jr., 30, was driving to a holiday gathering with his children and girlfriend in his SUV on Friday afternoon when a suspect pulled up his vehicle next to the family's SUV and someone opened fire from inside.

Prince George County police said they are investigating road rage as a possible factor and the search for the gunman is on. No other passengers in the vehicle were injured but Kelly was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

Killed for No Reason

Danny Kelly Jr
Danny Kelly Jr Twitter

It is not known what exactly was the reason behind the rage. According to reports, Kelly was completely taken by shock when the suspect's vehicle just pulled up and suddenly started firing. "At this time, detectives are looking into whether this was possible road rage," local police said in a statement.

Kelly, a resident of Clinton, Md., was driving a pickup truck northbound along St. Barnabas Road in Temple Hills about 4:40 pm on Friday when the other vehicle came from nowhere and pulled up alongside his family's vehicle and someone inside it opened fire.

While the suspect continued to fire, Kelly's girlfriend and three young kids continued to scream in fear from the backseat.

When cops arrived at the scene, the found Kelly unconscious in the driver's seat with multiple gunshot wounds, Prince George's County Police Department announced on Saturday in a statement. He was later pronounced dead.

"This is an absolutely heartbreaking loss for Mr. Kelly's family and friends," major crimes acting Major David Blazer said December 25.

"He is not home with his loved ones today on Christmas who are now mourning his loss instead of celebrating the holiday."

Neither his girlfriend nor three children were harmed in the shooting, police said.

Successful Career

crime scene
A crime scene (For representational purposes onlu). Pixabay

Kelly, who went by the ring alias Danny 'Smooth', fought as a heavyweight in professional boxing from 2012 to 2019, according to the He won 10 of the 14 bouts he fought. In his final match on October 18, 2019, Kelly knocked out his opponent Nick Kisner.

On Sunday, Kisner paid tribute to his ring rival. "Danny was a good dude," Kisner wrote on Facebook. "Me and him were cool before the fight and even after the fight. He was a hell of fighter too. But truth be told, I never had any clue I'd be the last person that he ever fought. And in a way I'm glad that he went out with a win. He was a good guy, and he deserved [that]," Kisner wrote.

It's not known what prompted Kelly to retire form boxing, nor is it known whether he took up another occupation in more recent years.

Kelly's children, who range in age from four to nine, are "traumatized," by the brazen afternoon shooting, a family friend told, adding she "couldn't stop crying" after hearing the news. The Prince George County Police Department is offering $25,000 for information leading to an arrest of the shooter.