Police are on the hunt for two young men in connection with the murder of high school basketball star Tayshana “Chicken” Murphy, who was slain early Sunday in the Grant Houses in Harlem. Robert Cartagena, who is reportedly in his '20s, and Tyshawn Brockington, 21, are wanted for questioning in the fatal shooting, which police now believe was motivated by a long-running feud between Murphy, her brother Bam-Bam, and young residents of the nearby Manhattanville Houses.
"They are seen in the video with guns in their waistbands," NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly told reporters today, referring to surveillance video of the killing. A third suspect, Terique Collins, 24, was arrested last night; investigators believe he provided the gun to Cartagena and Brockington, the Post reports. Although the murder was initially thought to be a result of mistaken identity, witnesses say the killers chased Murphy and her brothers into the building and killed her to get payback for a previous assault.
Murphy had a dispute with a 15-year-old girl at Bishop Loughlin High School last year, and transferred "under threat of suspension." The Post also reports that Murphy had a record of two arrests that were sealed, and was arrested in July for third-degree assault. But she was being recruited by a number of colleges, and was determined to use her talents on the basketball court to get her mother out of the projects.