Harlem execution of drug lord Alpo Martinez brings peace to one woman

Michelle Taliaferro whose finance Martinez had killed says kingpin’s death has helped her.


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Alpo Martinez
Alberto "Alpo" Martinez

Few people shed a tear this Halloween for a notorious gangster whose violent past finally caught up with him.

Alberto “Alpo” Martinez, a drug kingpin who was portrayed by Cam’ron in the 2002 movie “Paid In Full,” was killed in a drive-by shooting as he sat in his car at 147th Street and Frederick Douglass Boulevard around 3.30am on October 31. He was shot five times.

Martinez, whose last known address was in Maine, was rushed to Harlem Hospital but couldn’t be saved.

The gangster had in fact been in a witness protection program for six years after confessing to 14 murders and turning government witness against his partners in a lucrative drug operation that court papers alleged brought 1,200 pounds of cocaine into D.C.

Martinez had been given a new identity and a new home in Lewiston, Maine.

However, he apparently couldn’t stay away from some of his old stomping grounds, including Harlem.

Cops say that the fateful decision to return meant that Martinez, 55, was effectively living on borrowed time.

What is more, authorities said in the days following his killing last month that there was likely no shortage of people looking to settle scores with the former drug lord.

In addition to his fellow mobsters, there were also apparently a series of spurned women after Martinez, according to a report in the NY Post earlier this month.

Nonetheless, the Halloween murder of the mobster has brough a long-sought peace to a woman whose fiance was gunned down on his orders 32 years ago.

“Karma has everyone’s address,” Michelle Taliaferro, now 56, told the NY Daily News. “And the way you operate in life, eventually you’re going to have to face your demons. Karma will find you out on these streets … I’m feeling a little more comfortable with myself.”

Matthew Blake was just 24 and the father of an infant daughter when a bloodthirsty teen gunman known as “Lil Pop” gunned him down in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 6, 1989. Martinez, who eventually relocated his trade from Harlem to the nation’s capital, was later recorded recounting his role in the 1989 killing.

“I was there,” recalled Martinez. “We had a murder. I went to pick up some drugs in New York, and when I came back I met up with Pop. And he told me that he had just killed Blake.”

Taliaferro blamed Martinez for ordering the killing and the gangster was never far from her thoughts as she raised her daughter without a father.

“It just shook my whole world,” she told the NY Daily News. “I called Martinez a monster. Blake was just one of those people murdered where he had something to do with it. For me, it’s closure.”

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