Woman guilty of manslaughter for shooting Jacksonville mother at BP station

Sahara Barkley, 24, shot dead on New Year's Day in 2018

By Corley Peel - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A woman has been found guilty of manslaughter in the death of a Jacksonville mother who was shot and killed on New Year's Day in 2018 at a gas station in Riverside.

Tairrah McGriff was arrested after the death of Sahara Barkley, 24. In addition to manslaughter, a jury found her guilty of carrying a concealed firearm. The verdict was unanimous.

“I’m happy that justice was served for my baby today, and we got the verdict that we wanted," said Rosie Brooks-White, Barkley's mother.

According to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, Barkley (pictured, right) died after she got into a dispute with McGriff at the BP gas station on Stockton Street in Riverside.

Investigators said Barkley went into the gas station to buy a pack of cigarettes and left her car running. A man got into the vehicle while she was inside and drove away. Detectives said surveillance video showed that when Barkley approached McGriff, the woman pulled out a gun and shot Barkley.

"(It's been) A journey from hell. Many sleepless nights up crying, can’t sleep. Calling the phone, knowing she’s still not going to answer," Brooks-White said.

Brooks-White hopes her daughter's death will bring awareness to gun violence.

“If we can touch one person to wake up and say, 'We notice this,' that’s all we can hope for, but I don’t think it's going to be a wake up call because it's too much. Too many guns are in the wrong hands," she said.

Barkley left behind a 2-year-old son.

McGriff's family did not wish to comment on the verdict. A sentencing hearing for McGriff is scheduled for Nov. 18.

Shawntez Edmondson was arrested during a traffic stop in connection with Barkley's death. Jacksonville police said Edmondson stole Barkley's car moments before she was shot. Court records show Edmondson was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

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