Daughter had invited boyfriend over before confrontation in attic
By Sally Voth -- Daily Staff Writer
EDINBURG -- A 47-year-old man has confessed to shooting his daughter's 16-year-old boyfriend to death, according to a criminal complaint filed in Shenandoah County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.
Jody Lynn Bradley, of 189 Wakemans Grove Road, was arrested shortly after Brendon Manning Barker, 16, of Coal Mine Road, Strasburg, was shot dead just after 6 p.m. Tuesday. He is charged with first-degree murder and being held without bail.
A revolver and ammunition were found at Bradley's home, which is where the shooting took place, according to a search warrant filed in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
Shenandoah County Sheriff Timothy C. Carter said that his department served Barker a civil notice on Nov. 26 warning him not to trespass on Bradley's property. Bradley could have obtained a warrant against Barker if he then came on his property, Carter said.
"A trespass notice doesn't give you any authority to take another person's life," he said.
Barker was invited to the home by Bradley's daughter -- who Carter identified as Sarah Anne Bradley, a Central High School student -- at about 4 p.m. Tuesday, according to an affidavit for the search warrant. The couple went up to the attic to watch a movie while her father was doing farm work, it says.
When they heard him coming toward the attic, Barker hid, it says.
Sarah Bradley opened the attic door and, when her father asked what she was doing, she said she was alone. He said, "Yeah right, get out of my way," according to the affidavit.
"The female then stated [that] Jody Bradley went past her into the attic and located [Barker] and [Barker] stood up," it says.
He then shot Barker, the affidavit says, and Sarah Bradley asked what he was doing.
"Jody Bradley replied something to the effect of 'I hope you're happy, our lives are over now and it's all your fault,'" the affidavit says.
Sarah Bradley found Barker unresponsive on the floor with a gunshot wound to his forehead, it says.
When she went downstairs, she saw her father dismantling a pistol and cleaning another firearm, according to the affidavit.
Sarah Bradley called 911 at about 6:10 p.m., saying her father had just shot her boyfriend in the head, the affidavit says, and a couple minutes later, Bradley told a dispatcher he'd shot an intruder.
Barker, whose 17th birthday would have been next week, was a junior at Strasburg High School, Principal Barry Arey said. Teachers broke the news to their students, and counseling was available for those who needed it.
"We had several dozen students that did come out," Arey said. "We had kind of a banner laying on the floor, and students could go into the old gym and write their feelings down on the paper."
Teachers at Central High School, where Sarah Bradley is a junior, were on the lookout for students having difficulty, Principal Chris Cook said.
"If they noticed that, then certainly, they can allow those students to leave class and go down and see our counselors," he said. "That has taken place with a couple of our students."
Kyle Coffman had known Barker since the first grade, and last saw him Tuesday when Barker came to his house to pick up some DVDs.
"He was a good kid, best friend I ever had," he said Wednesday evening. "We were like brothers. He was laid-back. He liked playing games. He liked snowboarding. He loved hanging out with his friends. He loved hanging out with his girlfriend, Sarah. He had a good life, parents that loved him. Everybody loved him. He was loved."
Another friend, Nic Reading, described Barker as laid-back and "nice to everybody." He heard about the shooting Tuesday night, and said he had to break the news to Barker's mother.
"A friend of mine called me and told me to sit down, and then told me that he had been shot," Reading said. "[Sarah Bradley's] dad told him six or seven months ago if he ever saw him up there he would kill him."
But Barker had been caught at the Bradleys' home several times since and nothing had happened, so Barker wasn't concerned, Reading said.
During an initial appearance via video in Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court on Wednesday morning, Bradley was ordered to fill out a financial affidavit to see if he qualified for a court-appointed attorney. His next court appearance is scheduled for Feb. 12.
Contact Sally Voth at firstname.lastname@example.org
Scene of the shooting
View Larger Map