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Teen Basketball Star Shot Dead Pleading for Her Life

Tayshana Murphy may have been the victim of mistaken identity
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2011 2:35 AM CDT

(Newser) – A Harlem high school basketball superstar was chased by a gunman into her apartment complex where he shot her three times as she pleaded for her life, say cops. Senior Tayshana "Chicken" Murphy, 18, was already being courted by Division 1 schools, and she dreamed of playing for the WNBA. "She was pleading for her life," said a witness. "She was saying 'No, please, I don't have nothing to do with it.'" Police did not disclose a motive, but sources told the New York Daily News that she may have been targeted because of a long-running feud between two housing projects.

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She may have been the victim of mistaken identify and taken for a boy because she was wearing a sweatshirt with the hood up, sources told ESPN. Surveillance cameras have captured images of men believed to be Murphy's killers chasing after her with pistols stuck in their waistbands. One man has been arrested, and police are hunting two others, according to the Wall Street Journal. Murphy was rated one of the top prep school point guards in the nation by ESPN and the best in New York by the Daily News. "She said, 'Mom I'm going to get you out of the projects,'" her mother told the News. (Read more crime stories.)

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