Murder victim's dad waits to hear from family of ex-Mavericks star

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by GARY REAVES

WFAA

Posted on December 30, 2010 at 7:08 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 30 at 7:15 PM

Eyo murdered

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DALLAS — The body of Bradley Bassey Eyo, 23, was found the morning after Christmas near Lake Ray Hubbard.

Now police believe the man who killed the promising college student is the son a a former Dallas Mavericks star.

Nickey Van Exel is jailed, facing a capital murder charge for killing somone who was supposed to have been one of his closest friends.

With Bradley home from college for christmas, his father, Oyo Bassey Eyo, had been planning on Monday to take a new family photo.

Now he is planning Bradley's funeral.

The Texas Southern senior was found shot and killed on Sunday morning.

"Bradley was a good boy," his dad said.

The body was found in a park on Lake Ray Hubbard. But police now say the murder actually happened across the street from the family home, and police identified the killer as Nickey Van Exel, who turned himself in.

Nickey was Bradley's boyhood friend with a famous father, Nick Van Exel, who once starred for the Dallas Mavericks.

Bradley's father said police told him Nickey claimed it was an accident.

"They were playing with a shotgun, and when it went off on Bradley, he didn't know what to do, took his body and dumped on the street," the elder Eyo said.

But Dallas police investigators offer a different scenario.

"If a person is making the assertion this was an accident, you place the body in a vehicle and moved it to a second location, that in itself — coupled with the fact that property is missing — makes this a capital murder," said Deputy Chief Craig Miller.

The Eyo familiy aches with the loss of their number one son, and now waits to hear from the Van Exel family.

"I know the family very well," Oyo Bassey Eyo said. "Nick Van Exel has not even called me from Houston... his father has not called me, and that's wrong."

Police say if the evidence proves the shooting was an accident, they could reduce the charge.

For now, Nickey Van Exel's bond is set at $1 million.

E-mail greaves@wfaa.com

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