ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)-- It was a tearful gathering in Moline Acres in North County Monday night.
For the third time in 15 years, the same mother has suffered the loss of a child to murder.
Shrelia Barnes, 31, was stabbed to death in the 10,000 block of Duke early Sunday morning, police said.
Investigators were back at the scene gathering evidence Monday night, as about 100 mourners gathered holding candles at Barnes’ home just a couple of blocks away on Chambers Road.
“We have been through so many murders. We stick together. Shrelia we love you. We’re out here representing you as you look around,” said her cousin, Joe Mayes, addressing the crowd.
“Yes, Jesus loves me,” they sang.
It was as heartbreaking a gathering as there’d ever been, it seemed.
Barnes son, Demetrius, 14, named for his murdered uncle, was there mourning his murdered mother.
His two little sisters, ages 6 and 3 were beside him.
Their grandmother, suffering the loss of a 3rd child to murder, was sobbing behind them.
Relatives said Shrelia knew her accused killer, Edward Chatmon, 48, well.
The St. Louis County Prosecutor charged him with 2nd degree murder and armed criminal action. He remained jailed Monday night.
“We’ve got to stop this killing. Enough is enough,” shouted Shrelia’s Aunt Margaret.
She thanked St. Louis County Police for bringing such swift justice.
Barnes’ mother tearfully rejected any talk of justice.
“No not justice. How could it be justice if she’s gone?” she cried. “Please don’t leave me, where you at? Please don’t leave me. God I’m not ready for her to go!”
“That’s our guardian angel, now we’re missing another one, because someone took her life because he wouldn’t get out there and work for what she had,” said Delores Walker, Shrelia’s godmother.
She said Chatmon stabbed and killed her when Barnes refused to give him money.
“Love you, Shrelia, love you, shrelia!” the crowd chanted.
“I can't go through this again,” Shrelia’s mother said.
She has one living child now, a grown daughter.
Barnes' mother has lost three of her five children to violence in the last 15 years.
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