Local News

Thursday, Jul 04 2013 06:32 PM

Bakersfield native shot to death in Miami robbery

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    Jerry Wayne Sherrell. CBS4 TV, Miami.

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By The Bakersfield Californian

MIAMI — Media outlets report that a former Bakersfield man was fatally shot in a robbery late Monday night in the south Florida city.

Bakersfield's KGET TV reports Jerry Wayne Sherrell, 54, refused to hand over a mobile phone to a pair of robbers on a street. One of the suspects shot Sherrell, who died despite efforts by a witness to render first aid.

KGET reports Miami police arrested a 16-year-old suspect shortly after the shooting and that a second suspect remains at large.

Sherrell grew up in Bakersfield but had lived in Arkansas for the last three years, according to KGET. Sherrell's daughter, Wyona Weeden, also of Arkansas, said her father had been working on a tunnel project for the Port of Miami.

Weeden told CBS4 of Miami that the suspects didn't take her father's phone or cash after shooting him. Sherrell had been walking home after buying cigarettes.

"They left it," she told the TV news station. "It's like they killed my dad for nothing."

CBS4 reports that the second suspect is 14. Weeden told the news station that the younger teen was the shooter and that police told her the boy is wanted in connection with another robbery.

A memorial service in Bakersfield has been planned but no date had been set, KGET reports.

Weeden said she last spoke to her father about three hours before he was shot.

"He told me that he loved me," she told the Miami station. "He couldn't wait to get home. He was coming home on Friday and leaving Miami for good. He bought his granddaughter a car for her 16th birthday, and he was bringing it to her."

Weeden said her father helped support her grandmother, who has cancer and three months to live.

The Miami Herald reports that Sherrell was a block from home when he was approached by two teens at about 11:30 p.m. The 16-year-old, identified as Gregory Cooper, demanded that Sherrell hand over the phone while the younger boy held the man at gunpoint. When Sherrell refused, the 14-year-old shot him several times, the Herald reports.

Sherrell was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Cooper reportedly admitted to his involvement and told police the second boy, known as Chuck, was the shooter. The Herald said Cooper was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder.

Police are still searching for the younger teen. CBS4 said both suspects could face trial as adults.

The TV station reports family and co-workers will pay their respects at a viewing for Sherrell Friday. The family plans to bury him in Booneville, Ark.

— The Californian

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