Opening statements began Tuesday morning in the trial of a woman accused of shooting and killing a teenager in 2020.
According to police, Shaetavia Cooper shot 16-year-old Teneria McClendon during an argument outside Wawa on 103rd Street.
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Ten state witnesses took the stand Tuesday: Teneria’s mother, younger sister, cousin, a friend, members of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office and a man who provided assistance to the victim.
The store’s surveillance video was shown multiple times during Tuesday’s trial.
The state argues that Cooper took a verbal argument too far and added that McClendon was unarmed.
The defense claims Cooper acted in self-defense and said Cooper was scared.
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Teneria’s mother, Sharonica Eady, was a witness for the prosecution who took the stand.
“I’m standing there with my arms outstretched like they’re teens… they’re teens. She shot her like she was nothing,” Eady said.
Eady was with several other teenage girls that night, including her daughters.
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“I just heard something fall, and I turned around and she just fell to the floor,” Eady said.
Cooper was present in court on Tuesday.
“Shaetavia Cooper acted in self-defense,” Cooper’s attorney said. “She had a licensed firearm. She was never the aggressor. She was spat on and charged in the store.”
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The defense argued that six strangers followed Cooper to her car after the argument, also bringing up Eady stopping her daughter.
Body camera footage from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office presented in court Tuesday shows Cooper saying, “I should have walked away from the situation.”
Cooper has been charged with manslaughter.
The trial will resume Wednesday morning.
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