Deadly home invasion in West Oak Lane

WEST OAK LANE - July 24, 2012

The motive is under investigation but police are trying to determine if the suspects were there to rob the home or if their sole purpose was to shoot the victim.

Just before midnight 35th District officers got a call about a shooting on the 6700 block of N Gratz Street in Philadelphia's West Oak Lane section.

Police and Fire Department paramedics found the victim, identified by family members as 43-year-old Eric Murray, in the second floor hallway of his house, having suffered multiple gunshot wounds to his torso, shoulder, arm and face. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Investigators say it started when a woman knocked on the door asking to use the telephone. Murray's 84-year-old grandfather answered the door, and when he opened it for her two men forced their way in.

Police say the men ran right to the second floor and shot the victim at least seven times using two semi-automatic handguns. Police recovered 9mm casings and .380 caliber casings at the scene.

Family members arrived at the home Tuesday morning stunned and devastated.

Gloria Spaddy, Eric Murray's aunt, tells Action News, "He was a loving father. He had two girls and two or three grandchildren. I don't know. He was a good, kind guy. That's all I know."

It is unclear if anything was stolen from the home, but police say it does not appear to have been ransacked.

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