By Debbie Emery – Radar Reporter
Police in St. Louis are investigating the tragic death of a college volleyball star who was fatally shot in broad daylight on Saturday afternoon just hours before she was due to take the court for a game at her alma mater.
Megan Boken, 23, who was a standout player at St. Louis University had returned to her college town to play in a match that pitted alumni against student athletes to kick off the fall season, but instead was murdered while she sat in her Volkswagen in the city’s Central West End neighborhood, reported CBS affiliate KMOX.
A witness claims that a man approached the car, or had just gotten out of it, right before the shooting occurred and the pair appeared to have been arguing. He then fired shots and fled from the scene on foot, according to police.
The pretty blonde SLU graduate was hit in the neck and chest and pronounced dead at the Barnes-Jewish Hospital.
“We don’t have a motive but are investigating it from a robbery standpoint,” said David Marzullo, director of public information for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.
Boken had been living in Chicago but was back in St. Louis for the alumni game and the shooting reportedly took place near her old apartment building.
“We are shocked and saddened by this terrible and tragic loss. Megan was a truly outstanding student-athlete who excelled in the classroom and on the court,” read a statement from the university. “She exemplified the very best of what it means to be a Saint Louis University Billiken. Our focus right now is on providing as much support as we can for our students, and our thoughts and prayers are with Megan’s family and friends during this very difficult time.”
Police describe the suspected gunman as an African-American male, in his mid-20s, 5’8″ to 5’10”, with a thin build and a short haircut.
St. Louis has one of the highest homicide rates in the country, according to FBI statistics.