Daughter trying to cope after mother killed at graduation

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Takesha Barnes and family By Jennifer Thomas Takesha Barnes and family By Jennifer Thomas
Thomas Moton By Andrew Michalscheck Thomas Moton By Andrew Michalscheck

AVONDALE, Ariz. -- "She was my everything." That's the way 18-old-year-old LaMeka Barnes describes her beloved mother, Takesha Barnes.

On Friday afternoon Barnes, a mother of three, was shot and killed in the parking lot of Westview High School in what witnesses describe as a fatal explosion of domestic violence.

The shooting occurred as Barnes was attending the eighth-grade graduation ceremony for her 14-year-old daughter, Sierra.

"When I ran out there and saw her in the car it was unbelievable," said Barnes' sister, Britton Bellamy, who also attended the graduation ceremony. "It was something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. She was lifeless."

Barnes' 38-year-old ex-boyfriend and father of two of her children, Thomas Lamont Moton, has been arrested and charged in the shooting.

Family members say Moton was frequently violent to Barnes and that she was trying to end the abusive relationship.

"She ran out of time," Bellamy said of her slain sister. "I hope he burns in hell," she added when asked about Moton.

Moton is facing multiple charges, including first-degree murder, and is being held on a $2 million bond.

All this week Barnes' friends and family are holding a car wash at McFall's Tire Store on Indian School Road just west of 107th Avenue to raise money for the funeral.