DENTON, Texas — A Texas woman who appeared on a short-lived MTV reality series has been charged in the fatal shooting of her husband, who was slain just four days after the couple said “I do.”
Amber Jean Marie Rosales, 30, of Sanger, was arrested for murder Thursday in the April 25 killing of Jeffrey Michael McBride. She is being held in lieu of $500,000 bond on the murder charge.
Rosales is also accused of violating her probation in a 2021 Florida case in which she was convicted of filing a false report of sexual battery involving a police officer, court records show.
In 2013, Rosales was one of 10 women featured on “Big Tips Texas,” a reality show about female employees at Redneck Heaven, a controversial sports bar and restaurant in Lewisville. The show ran for a single season.
McBride was known in his hometown of Denton for his own conviction in a 2015 fatal shooting. The Denton Record-Chronicle reported that McBride spent two years in prison for criminally negligent homicide in the death of a homeless man.
Originally charged with murder, McBride went on trial in 2017, but jurors could not agree on whether he shot and killed Eddie Joe Gonzales, 51, in self-defense. McBride later pleaded guilty to the lesser homicide charge.
McBride’s sister, Katy McBride, has said publicly that her brother, who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety, was a victim of domestic violence up until his death.
“We’re thankful for the excellent and diligent work of the Denton Police Department for bringing justice to Jeff,” Katy McBride said in a statement on behalf of her family. “Jeff’s friends and family love and miss him every day, and nothing will bring him back. But we are hopeful the person who did this to Jeff will be held accountable.
“The arrest helps, but it is never going to fill this unbelievable void in our lives.”
Denton police officers responded just before 10 p.m. on April 25 to the 1100 block of East Sherman Drive, where they found Jeff McBride, 31, in the driver’s seat of his pickup truck. Rosales was sitting in the passenger seat, screaming and crying, according to authorities.
McBride was unconscious and dying of a gunshot wound to the abdomen.
“The initial 911 caller told dispatchers that her husband had just been shot, while another caller reported a pickup truck had crashed in the yard of a residence,” police officials said in a statement.
McBride was taken to Medical City Denton, where he was pronounced dead about an hour later.
According to police, Rosales initially told police she and her new husband had stopped on the street to speak to a Black man, who pulled a gun and shot her husband. She said the gunman threw the gun into their truck as her husband’s foot hit the accelerator and he crashed the vehicle into a nearby yard.
Rosales alleged that her husband was “going to do a drug deal, and it went bad,” according to an arrest affidavit obtained by the Record-Chronicle.
Detectives who spoke to Rosales noted inconsistencies between her statements at the scene and statements she made later at the police station, including what type of handgun had been used to kill McBride.
Rosales also stated that the gunman had shot her husband and wiped off the gun before tossing it onto the floorboard of the truck and running away, the Record-Chronicle reported. That statement was inconsistent with a statement in which she said her husband’s foot hit the accelerator immediately after he was shot.
Officers noticed scratches on Rosales’ arms, which she could not explain, the affidavit stated. She also had a swollen finger, which she said had been injured in a struggle with the gunman over the weapon.
The revolver, which was found on the floorboard of the truck, was determined to belong to McBride’s parents. Rosales told detectives the gunman had stolen the weapon from her in-laws’ home earlier that month.
Members of the McBride family said, however, that the gun appeared to have disappeared from the home the night of the killing. The last time McBride and Rosales went to the house, no one accompanied them, authorities said.
Surveillance footage from the area of the shooting also proved the alleged fabrications in Rosales’ statements, the affidavit said. The footage showed that McBride’s truck did not stop on the road before the crash, and no one was seen fleeing the scene on foot.
A witness driving by at the time of the shooting also told police that he had to swerve to avoid being struck by the truck but saw no one outside the truck at the time of the crime.
“The victim sustained a single gunshot wound to his right side and the only person in the vehicle that could have fired the weapon was Rosales and not an unknown male that was alleged by Rosales to have come up to the stopped vehicle and firing the fatal shot,” the affidavit states, according to the newspaper.
Katy McBride told the Record-Chronicle that her brother and Rosales had not known one another for long.
In Jeff McBride’s obituary, his sister detailed his struggles with his incarceration, PTSD and addiction. She also wrote of the ways that the prison system broke him.
“Jeff didn’t leave prison in a better position than when he went in, regardless of his want and willingness to realize a fuller life,” the obituary read.
She described her brother as kindhearted.
“He measured his life not by the milestones of societal norms, but instead by the quality of moments with the people he loved,” Katy McBride wrote. “Our hearts are broken, and our lives will never be the same. We are forever grateful for the time we had with Jeff while he was here on earth, but we’re left with a huge gap in our hearts and lives, and we are praying that we will receive justice for Jeff.”
Jeff McBride wasn’t the only one in his relationship with a criminal history. Rosales has a string of nearly a dozen previous arrests in Denton County, mostly for public intoxication.
She was also charged in 2016 with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, Texas records show.
A September 2013 MTV News story about “Big Tips Texas” described Rosales as one of the veteran employees at Redneck Heaven.
“Amber would take a bullet for any of her Redneck sisters and has been a loyal employee of the chain since day one,” the now-archived story read. “Watch out, though: She’s got a drunken alter-ego, and it’s not particularly fond of one of the new girls.”
Rosales has two arrests on record in Bay County, Florida, including the conviction for which she is on probation.
Bay County court documents indicate that Rosales was being questioned in July 2021 for an incident involving public intoxication when she accused a deputy of sexually assaulting her while she sat in the front seat of a patrol car.
A review of body camera and in-car camera footage showed that there had been no physical contact between Rosales and any of the deputies that night.
Katy McBride wrote on Facebook that she knew of the alleged domestic abuse her brother suffered but thought he was strong enough to get away. In hindsight, she said, the red flags are “damning.”
“The signs were there, but you don’t think someone is capable of something like this until it happens,” she wrote. “I knew of her history, and he told me she could change — people change.”
She described Jeff McBride as the “perfect target” for abuse because of his mental health issues and low self-esteem. She urged anyone suffering from abuse to reach out for help.
“My brother is a statistic, but he was so much more than that to so many,” she said.
If you or someone you know is the victim of domestic violence, help is available at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233). You can also reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline online at thehotline.org or by texting START to 88788.
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