Estranged boyfriend charged in murder of St. Louis woman


Willie Barnes.

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – A 49-year-old  man was charged Friday in the shooting death of his ex-girlfriend while she was at a stoplight near downtown St. Louis, one of seven murders that occurred over a 24-hour period in mid-January.

According to police, the shooting took place at the intersection of S. Tucker Boulevard and Chouteau Avenue around 8:15 a.m. The victim, 32-year-old Cheri Simpson, was waiting in her car with two male passengers when another vehicle pulled alongside hers. Words were exchanged between people in the two vehicles before the shots rang out.

Simpson was struck in the shoulder and taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The front seat passenger was shot in both hands and taken to the hospital. The passenger in the backseat was uninjured.

The suspect, identified as Willie Barnes, was captured a short time later. He remains jailed on a $500,000 cash-only bond.

Police are calling this a “domestic dispute.”



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