MTSU's Stewart stabbed to death
18-year-old roommate charged with first degree murder
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Middle Tennessee basketball player Tina Stewart, 21, was stabbed to death at her apartment close to campus, authorities said Wednesday night.
Stewart had multiple wounds when authorities found her, Murfreesboro Police spokesman Kyle Evans said. Police had been called because of a disturbance, and Evans said officers took a man and a woman into custody outside the apartment before finding Stewart inside.
Stewart, a junior guard from Memphis, was taken to Middle Tennessee Medical Center and was later pronounced dead.
Rutherford County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Lisa Marchesoni said Shanterrica Madden, 18, was charged with first degree murder in the death of her roommate.
Middle Tennessee president Sidney McPhee, who spoke with Stewart's father, said at a news conference that the entire university is grieving over the death of "a wonderful talented and vibrant young woman." McPhee said Stewart had spent the past three Thanksgivings with his family because she could not return home for the holiday.
"The anguish I feel as a father and a president ... but personally as a father with a daughter about the age of Tina cannot adequately be expressed with words," McPhee said.
Counselors have been alerted to help on campus.
Stewart averaged 5.5 points and 2.5 rebounds in 28 games this season for the Blue Raiders (23-6), who are the No. 1 seed from the East and scheduled to start play in the Sun Belt Conference tournament Sunday against either Florida Atlantic or Arkansas State in Hot Springs, Ark. They are looking for a 14th trip to the NCAA tournament.
Athletic director Chris Massaro was emotional at the news conference. "This is an unspeakable tragedy to one of our family members," Massaro said. "Our biggest concern is with Tina and her family. The team is devastated, but we'll work through this together ... one step at a time."