CORDELE, GA (WALB) - The Eastside Grocery on 8th Avenue and 2nd Street in Cordele was the scene of an armed robbery and shootout last February.
The store owner, Sarfaraz Kahn, died in the incident. The suspect, 21-year old Marquerious Carter, was also shot by Kahn. Carter was convicted after 20 minutes of deliberations Tuesday in a Cordele jury room
Judge Robert Chasteen, Jr. sentenced Carter to life in prison without parole, and a consecutive five year sentence for malice murder, felony murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.
"Certainly now, we've delivered justice for them, and to give them some sense of peace and closure on this case, and we're thankful that that's what they can deal with now. Although, it will be difficult to live without him, because he can't be replaced for their family," said District Attorney Brad Rigby.
"Kahn was affectionately known to his employees and friends as 'Pops.'" said Rigby. "The evidence demonstrated that Kahn was closing his store with his employees, Carter came out of the shadows with a T-shirt covering his face. Carter shot at Kahn seven times with a .380 Jimenez firearm, hitting him three times, with one round hitting him in the chest puncturing his lung. Prior to his death, Kahn returned fire with his pistol hitting Carter in the leg. These events were witnessed by two store employees."
Dating back to 2014, this robbery makes at least six times the store has been hit. The store was robbed in October of last year.
Robbers also targeted the place on March 5th and January 8th of 2015. In 2014, the store was robbed in early December and in May.
Shots were fired in previous robberies, but this robbery marks the first time anyone was injured.