A former high School basketball star from Westchester who went on to play at the Division I collegiate and professional levels was killed in a shooting in Vermont early Sunday morning, according to the Montpelier Police Department and Vermont State Police.
Markus Austin, 33, who helped White Plains High School win the state championship in 1999, was shot to death outside an apartment complex at around 4:30 a.m. following an altercation outside Gustos bar located on Prospect Street in Barre, Vt., police said.
The suspect, 29-year-old Jayveon Caballero, is at large and wanted for second-degree murder, police said.
Police said an investigation indicates that Caballero knew Austin and that both were involved in the altercation that also included other individuals. Police say Caballero subsequently confronted Austin outside 191 Barre Street in Montpelier.
Montpelier PD detectives said they received information that at some point during the altercation, Caballero’s girlfriend, 22-year-old Desiree Cary, was assaulted by Austin. Detectives said they believe that Caballero shot Austin in the parking lot and fled the scene.
Cary, who police said was the target of an ongoing drug distribution investigation by members of the Vermont Drug Task Force, was later taken into custody following a motor-vehicle stop in Barre. She was subsequently lodged for lack of $10,000 bail and is facing charges that include the sale of crack cocaine, and three counts of sale of heroin, police said.
Detectives learned that Desiree Cary resides at an apartment with Caballero in Barre. During the early morning hours of Monday, Jan. 23, members of the Vermont State Police Tactical Services Unit and detectives executed a search warrant at this residence in an attempt to locate Caballero and to search for evidence of this crime. Upon entering the residence, Cabarello was not located.
Caballero reportedly may have fled Vermont sometime during the day on Sunday, and may have boarded a bus in White River Junction, Vt., headed to New York City.
The 6-foot-6, 215-pound Markus Austin, a forward, was a 1,000-point scorer for both White Plains and Eastern Michigan University, where he played through 2005.
Austin, who worked as a mental health specialist at the Vermont Psychiatric Care Hospital, originally moved to Vermont to play professional basketball for the Vermont Frost Heaves, a former ABA team that last played in the Premier Basketball League in 2011.
Check back to Daily Voice for updates.