JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A teenager died after a shooting late Saturday evening outside a Wawa convenience store on the city’s Westside, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said.
Officers were called just after 11:30 p.m. to a shooting at the Wawa on Wilson Boulevard near Lane Avenue South.
Police said they found a teenage girl with a life-threatening gunshot wound, and she was taken to a nearby hospital, where she died.
Family members identified the teen as 16-year-old Teneria McClendon. They said she was quiet, smart and took advanced classes in school. Her grandmother told News4Jax that McClendon had dreams of being a pediatric nurse and had just applied for a job at Publix.
Investigators said they learned there was an argument that started inside of the Wawa and the carried into the parking lot. At some point, according to the Sheriff’s Office, a handgun was fired, striking the teen.
Cellphone video, which News4Jax has blurred for sensitivity, shows the moments leading up to the shooting. In the video, commotion can be heard in the parking lot and then a single gunshot.
Police said they believe that they had all of the participants involved in the incident in custody, and interviews were being conducted.
Sources later told News4Jax one person had been arrested in connection with the shooting. Police confirmed that Monday.
Erica Rogers, a mother of four who lives on the Westside, said her heart goes out to the teen’s grieving family.
“It’s sad. It hurts,” Rogers said. “People are losing their children every day to unnecessary violence. People don’t know how to sit down and talk about their issues. They want to argue and then they want to pull out a gun, thinking that’s going to resolve the issue. That don’t resolve no issue because, whatever issue you have with that person, you’re going to wake up with the next morning.”
Other neighbors told News4Jax that the intersection of Wilson Boulevard and Lane Avenue normally feels safe and well-lit.
“This, you know, being the Westside, it’s always something going on, something always happening. This particular area this block has always been safe,” said Westside resident Raymond Young.
Anyone with any additional information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 904-630-0500 or email email@example.com. To remain anonymous, contact CrimeStoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS (8477).
Vigil honors 16-year-old
The family of McClendon held a vigil in her honor Sunday night.
About 50 people gathered in front of the convenience store for the vigil. They asked the media to keep their distance to respect the family. Afterward, News4Jax was able to catch up with a few family members who said they just want justice for McClendon.
“This is a senseless death. She was a baby, and she got killed standing behind her mother,” said Donna Ghent, McClendon’s great-aunt. “It was senseless. I mean, why does everybody need a gun? Everybody’s carrying guns, and it doesn’t make any sense.”
Investigators said the argument started inside the Wawa, but family members told News4Jax it started on the outside.
“All I know is, it was an altercation, and words was exchanged, and basically, you know, it went left,” said Navious Eutsay, McClendon’s cousin.
Eutsay, who said she came to the scene after the shooting happened, described what it was like being back Sunday.
“It’s painful. It’s very painful. It’s an unexplainable pain that I feel. We just want justice and the right thing to be done in this situation,” Eutsay said.
Loved ones described McClendon as a quiet, good girl with a bright future.
“She was a very great person. She had a sense of humor. She liked to laugh and play,” Eutsay said.