Thursday, October 26, 2006

Did Quavale Finnell Get What He Deserved?

Quavale Finnell

Over the last few days, I've deliberately avoided blogging about the short life and tragic death of Quavale Finnell because I just haven't believed that I could do the topic justice, at least not on this blog. There are so many questions.

  • At 14 years old, was Quavale a menace to society? Was he hopelessly lost or was he really trying to turn his life around?

  • Who deserves blame? Did Quavale's parents fail him? What blame should the Hamilton County Juvenile Court and Department of Jobs & Family Services bear? And what about the greater community, or the "village". Did we raise this child wrong? Or should he be held solely responsible for his actions in life, including those which led to his death?

  • Have you heard Quavale's grandmother, Olivia Champion, speak on this issue? Do you agree with her? Do you at least feel sorry for her? Mrs. Champion says she tried to get custody of Quavale but the white Hamilton County social workers who think they know what's best for Black kids blocked her and insisted that Quavale be place in foster care.

  • And what should happen to the man who allegedly shot and killed Quavale -- Bennie D. Hall, Jr.? Is he a vigilante? Was this self defense? Should he be arrested, charged, indicted, and forced to hire a lawyer and let a jury of his peers decide if he broke the law? Or is this a case where Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney Joseph T. Deters should say I don't have probable cause to take this case to a grand jury because the man had a permit to carry a concealed weapon and he was defending himself? (I wonder what would've happend if Joy Rolland's baby daddy had been carrying a loaded gun when Joy tried to run him over with her car and he had shot and killed her? Would he be charged with a crime?) Anyway, if you've ever had your car stolen or your home burglarized, you know that you feel violated. My car was stolen once, and I thought to myself: I wish I had caught the people in the act; I would've kicked their ass.

My nemesis, Axinar, doesn't seem to have any hangups about sharing his feelings on the Quavale Finnell situation. He recently posted a blog entry titled, "Quavale Finnell's Family: 'It Was A Car'". Here's what he had to say:

Local 12's Shawn Ley is right on top of the Quavale Finnell story.

He caught up with apparently his biological grandmother, Olivia Champion

Olivia Champion had words for the man accused of shooting Quavale Finnell whilst horking a 1994 Taurus - "I want this man to know, that this was a car. He has taken a life! - that he has taken a son from my daughter, he has taken a grandson, a brother. I want him to know the family is suffering."

Uh, hmmmm ... sounds somewhere along the lines that this family let this child loose to STEAL CARS ALL OVER TOWN and cause all manner of chaos. It sounds like this family lost this child long ago. Even his friends and foster siblings were expecting him to spend a good deal of time in the hoosgow or taking an extended dirt nap due to all this foolishness he was foisting upon the community.

The suspected shooter, 61-year-old Bennie D. Hall, Jr., has yet to be charged, and he and his wife, who witnessed the shooting, are saying that Quavale Finnell was trying to run Mr. Hall over with the '94 Taurus.

Olivia Champion continues, "Did it dawn on him to call 911? We live in a civilized society. This is not the wild, wild west."

Shut the F. up.

Did it dawn on you to KEEP YOUR GRANDSON OFF THE STREET???

My grandmother, God rest her soul, would have BEAT THE HIDE OFF ME after the FIRST car I stole.

You have NO idea what was going on.

The matter is obviously still under investigation, but, from where I'm sitting - look - I have owned Tauruses - SEVERAL of them - and that's a pretty substantive vehicle. Given one clearly out of control teenaged punk with a Taurus as a weapon and a 61-year-old on foot armed with nothing but a revolver and his wits, until the PoPo figure out otherwise, I'm leaning on the side of the 61-year-old.

I'm not sure I'm real comfortable with ordinary citizens having to make decisions about summarily executing these clearly dangerous individuals myself, but with the current system either unwilling or unable to do anything, I think you are going to see more and more individuals forced to defend themselves ... by any means necessary!

l'm posting Axinar's comments because I think they represent the views of a fair number of people. (I may have a guest blog entry from the lovely Amanda E. Mayes on this topic. Some of you may be surprised to read her view.) Naturally, some people will totally disagree with Axinar. That's cool. Those views (and really all responsible views) are welcome here at the Cincinnati Black Blog.


Anonymous said...

This is really a sad situation. But isn't his story the same as many young black men gone astray? In this case EVERYBODY failed him: his mother for laying up having all those kids; his father for abandoning him; his grandmother and aunts for not intervening BEFORE Hamilton County got their hands on them; and of course Hamilton County because once you get caught up in that trap---and that's exactly what it is--its very difficult to get out of. Just like the jail industry, foster care and adoption is a money making industry too. Kids=money.

I heard the grandmother and Aunt on the Buzz yesterday and the entire time I was shaking my head because they were blaming everyone but themselves, and now they want to call upon everybody and Jesus Christ for some justice. I agree with Jay-Love, when he laid out the harsh ugly truth of the matter.

As far as Mr. Hall, I don't know what to say about that until more information has been released. But in all honesty, I think he will walk b/c we live in a very conservative city where its OK to shoot someone to defend your property especially when the perp is a troubled juvenile deliquent. A lot of people, especially white folk will see no problem in what he did.

Cincinnati NAMjA said...

Its hard to say who is at fault. I do not think that Hall would have shot and killed the youngster if he knew he was only 14. At the time, all Hall knew what that someone was stealing his car, and most likely assumed that it was an adult doing the deed.

On the other hand, it is too easy for us to put the blacme on the parents, but in an over crowded home, it is hard to keep track of a teenager. Not impossible, just hard, and some parents may not be mentally or emotionally equipt to handle that responsibility. Does this put them at fault...?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Bet you don't print

RICLAND said...

Will you please pick up a book on newswriting and learn how to construct a proper news story?

Will you please learn what a "lead" is?

Will you please first answer the questions Who? What? Where? How? When? before launching off into your over-long peans to verbal diarrhea?

You start the story off as if everyone knows who this kid is and what happened to him. It's only five paragraphs below that we learn he was shot and killed. Then somewhere after this you provide the other details.

Geezuz, do you do this to aggravate me ...?


Anonymous said...

I agree with Axinar. And Bennie Hall had to do what he thought best at the time.

Finnell's parents failed him & so did the loudmouthed grandmother. They all deserve to be jailed,

"but the white Hamilton County social workers who think they know what's best for Black kids"

Yeah, here flips the race cards again. Friends in the county social service program have advised me that this entire tribe was being handled by (drum roll, please!) B-L-A-C-K so-called social workers.

Apparently, they knew all too well what was the best for this outfit. Overcrowded living conditions, a mother pumping out kids as if they were everyday turds, the whole bit.

This Finnell punk got exactly what he so deserved. Good riddance.

Alicia Doesn't Live Here Anymore said...

it's awful what happened to this kid, and no excuse for shooting someone through the side of the car for stealing a car.

but (and this justifies nothing) the kid doesn't appear to take crime & punishment seriously given the smirk on his face in that mugshot.

damn shame all around.

Anonymous said...

The lil' shit got what he deserved. Mr. Hall should be given a new pistol as a hearty "thank you" from the honest, law abiding taxpayers of Ohio...

Anonymous said...


If.... You are a total fraud....

[This comment has been edited by the administrator.]

Axinar said...

Have you heard Quavale's grandmother, Olivia Champion, speak on this issue? Do you agree with her? Do you at least feel sorry for her? Mrs. Champion says she tried to get custody of Quavale but the white Hamilton County social workers who think they know what's best for Black kids blocked her and insisted that Quavale be place in foster care.

Uh ... now if I understand this correctly, at the time he was shot, Quavale was LIVING ON THE STREETS.

If he would have gone to his grandmother's instead of stealing every car in town would Cincinnati's Finest have jack-booted-thugged him out of there?

If so, what concerns DID they have about the grandmother?

My grandparents raised me without formal custody - BECAUSE THEY KEPT ME OUT OF TROUBLE.

I had a friend who was a single parent killed in a car accident. She had a five-year-old at the time and he went to my friend's mother WITHOUT QUESTION.

What in the naught is going on that Quavale's grandmother was ruled unfit to raise this child?

Anonymous said...

I don't care if you are white, black or a green alien, if you try and steal my car and i have a gun in my hand i will try and shoot you. Period

Anonymous said...

You all disgust me. He was a kid. I knew Quavale as a student. Yes, he did have problems, but Quavale had a good heart. He was gentle and loving with his siblings. He was bright and had a quick wit. If he'd had more opportunities and a nurturing environment, he could have been an exceptional young man.

No one's life was in jeopardy. The front windshield was unblemished, so unless this Taurus somehow had wheels which spun around enabling the car to move sideways, there is no way Mr. Hall was being run over!


Anonymous said...

And if this was a kid in Indian Hill, they would just call it "joy riding." I agree. You're a bunch of sick fucks. So if it's right, then let's just let the cops go ahead and blow away anyone that steals something, or shoplifts or ...Why not? Cut out the middle man--the courts. Judge. Jury. and Executioner.
A kid can't be blamed if his parents and grandparents don't take care of him, nurture him, send him off to foster care, don't teach him. And take a look at the website and Bennie Hall Jr.. If this is the son of the shooter, then this guy should have been used to dealing with criminals. It appears he may have produced a drug dealing, thief himself so be careful calling him a hero. Maybe he's not much different than the parent of the late Quavale, Axinar you stupid narrow-minded goofball.

But all that said. I'TS ILLEGAL TO SHOOT SOMEONE THAT STEALS FROM YOU. So, go ahead kill someone over a car and spend some time visiting your relatives behind bars. Is it worth it?

Anonymous said...

Yet another poor misunderstood yoof who will never get the chance to father 8- 10 illegitimate welfare bastards. At least we won't be paying to keep him in prison, where he obviously was headed.

His "mother" should be spayed like the sow she is.

Anonymous said...

Good people should stand up to thiefs who want to steal their property. If the thief gets hurt or killed tough! DON"T STEAL STUPID! Other would be thiefs should take this as a warning!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Hall for ridding Cincinnati of another career thief!

FroneAmy said...

I am surprised the race issue hasn't come up more with this story. I definitely don't think it's an issue in this situation, but that's my opinion. I have a hard time with the comment "white folk will see no problem in what he (Bennie Hall) did". I'm white. I do see a problem with it. I just don't think we need to tar and feather him.
I have a bigger problem with the whole "why shoot a 14 year old" rant. First of all, for everybody living on the eastern half of the US, IT'S DARK AT 6 AM. Everybody in Cincinnati knows it was cold this week, and so the car was most likely frosty. Probably why Hall left it to warm up. The car was moving, etc. Would it make it OK to shoot Quavale if he was an adult? Would it make it OK to shoot him if it had been a brand new BMW he was stealing? Why are these 'logical' arguments to why Hall shouldn't have fired?

They're not. You can't tell someone's age in the dark, through a frosted window of a moving vehicle. And it's a moot point, it has nothing to do with the issue at hand here. Why is it so hard to see what the argument *should* be about?
One person shot another person over property. Whether or not he felt in danger for his life should have been the reason for firing/not firing his weapon. Justice would be to remove his concealed-carry license, IF he wasn't in fear for his life. If a grand jury feels Hall felt in danger, that's the end of it.

Anonymous said...

Axinar's view on whether Hall's shooting of a 14 year old boy is justified is self-sourced evidence highlighted for being unusual when the highlighted object, the Taurus, is typical, calling into question Axinar's view of the incident as a whole. Axinar highlights a Taurus as a "pretty substantive vehicle", as if it is to be distinguished as particularly threatening compared to other vehicles. Well, every roadworthy car is physically substantive whenever it comes into contact with a person at almost any speed. A VW bug, Geo, or a Crosley is "pretty substantive" if it hits you at 5 miles an hour. A riding lawnmower is probably "pretty substantive" at 5 miles an hour. Axinar boosts the Taurus's threatening imagery with his reality-based experience: "I have owned several Tauruses- SEVERAL of them". The word "SEVERAL", I suppose, is to yell that he will not brook any challenge to the quality and depth of that experience, which is an attempt to instantiate the unsubstantive implication that the Taurus was a particularly threatening vehicle compared to other vehicles when Hall killed a 14 year old boy driving a Taurus.

I can presume Axinar did not own several Taurus's because they are particularly threatening vehicles, yet that is his conception here.

Axinar's imagery in relation to the Taurus is significant because his written opinion on whether Hall's shooting of a 14-year old is justified is based on an assessment of Axinar's sensibility, which makes reader agreement with his opinion "faith-based", unless it can be demonstrated Axinar isn't sensible, in which case we can reject the implication of sensibility and the opinion itself. If the one thing Axinar describes as a fact is based on his personal experience, "I have owned several Taurus's -SEVERAL of them", and this fact is used to bolster a claim that a Taurus is to be distinguished by the reader as particularly threatening compared to every other passenger car, which is a view that can be reasonably dismissed, then it is reasonable to dismiss Axinar's sensibility on this subject when he "leans in favor" of the 61 year old Hall. Axinar does not have a balanced view.

For the case itself, the newspaper says that 14 year old Quavale Finnel was shot by 61 year old Hall under the left arm, which is consistent with statements found elsewhere that the car Quavale was driving was shot at from the side. If Hall shot the car from the side I don't think he can sucessfully claim self-defense, and, frankly, though people are hit by cars in accidents, it is difficult to hit a pedestrian with a car under any circumstances when the pedestrian sees the car coming. Who will expose their ignorance over the most basic matters relating to cars, by disagreeing? If a car comes at you, you move away to avoid it, right? Except, if you're Hall and you have a gun you shoot the driver. I think a sincere prosecutor would take this case very seriously and prosecute Hall even if the car was heading directly at him.

- Pickler

Anonymous said...

There is only one reason anyone carries a 45-caliper gun it is to kill whatever they are shooting at stupid. Hall did not care who it was he was shooting at, all he cared about was if they was "dead"!
You got him didn't you Hall you have managed to reduce the price of black life to a HOOPTY!!! Shame on any of you that condone this behavior! Black life is worth more than a rusty $1000 car Fool!

Anonymous said...

In case you missed it Yvonne Collins weighed in on the issue on Nathan Ive's show on Sunday. Yes, the same Collins that in recent months was arrested herself for stealing and assault.

And what was the wisdom she gave? She would give the shooter a metal and people should embrace the shooter just like the Amish community embraced the wife of their shooter. Huh? Should the manager of Wild Oats have shot her? After all she was a grown woman, not a child, and she has a jacket at least as bad or worse than his and her crimes include violence. She predicted how Quavale would have turned out to be in the future. That's all guesswork as he's dead. But it's not guesswork what she's turned out to be. It's right there in the mug shot and the multiple arrests and warrants. Talk about a threat to society.

Anonymous said...

What in the world is a "Hoopty"?

Sean said...

Ok first let me answer Nate's questions one by one and try to enlighten him to this whole situation because it's pretty obvious he hasn't done his research on this story. Quavale was indeed a menace to society. He has been arrested for assault, battery, and he has also been arrested at least three times for car theft. And here he was stealing another one. Turning his life around...fraid not.
Two: Quavale's mom has ten kids including quavale. TEN. She does not care about these kids, in her eyes they are an unfortunate byproduct of her disgusting behavior. The "village" has no duty to raise an obvious menace to society. The juvenile courts can only do what the law allows them to do. Quavale along with his mother are responsible for his actions.
Third: NO i do not feel sorry for the grandmother, she didn't do a very good job raising her own daughter, why would she be any better raising a kid who is obviously on a wayward path. Nate first find out why she wasn't allowed to have custody of Quavale before jumping to conclusions. Chances are she really isn't a fit mother or grandmother for that matter. Her track record can't be that good. Look at her worthless daughter. Quavale is a byproduct of his mother's ridiculous behavior. You cannot blame the city. His mother failed him, his grandmother failed him, and he failed himself. Obviously he didn't care about changing his life. Look at his mugshot. He's laughing at the authorities. With all this being said, I do not believe that Hall acted appropriately. There are laws he has to follow and he did not follow them. He should and will be punished for his thoughtless actions. To what degree will be left up to the courts when all of the facts come out. But do not blame Quvale's death on society, the blood of his death is on his mother's hands. This is probably the only time that she has ever cared about that boy,and it's only because she probably smells a big payday coming. Who wants to bet a wrongful death lawsuit is filed on behalf of the mother and grandmother.

Monica said...

Vigilante justice is unacceptable in this allegedly civilized society. The fact of the matter is that no one has the right to take the life of another to protect property. I am appalled by many of the responses that I have heard regarding this matter. Did the young man have the right to steal the car? Of course not. However we have a system of juris prudence which states in part that the punishment should fit the crime. This is what separates us from less civilized societies. So thieves if caught should be tried and suffer whatever legal consequence is proscribed. That is why we do not allow people to face the death penalty for shoplifting, stealing a car or even a heinous crime such as rape or child molestation. I have had my car stolen on more than one occasion and while I needed my vehicle and I worked hard to get and keep it I would have never shot at the people who stole the car. If what the grandmother states is true than there clearly was a breakdown in the social service system and that was a key piece of the puzzle, that led to a young man losing his life for a car.

Anonymous said...

Well Sean so you're a psychic capable of predicting the future of this young man. Add that to your credentials as psychiatrist and you're one self righteous mother fucker. It's all in the eye of the beholder. That picture doesn't appear to me to be laughing at authorities. It looks like an open faced, incredibly beautiful young man whose life was before him and like anyone else, he could have gone another path had the right people stepped up in his life and showed him another way. But instead, his life was snuffed out too early without any of us knowing if he could have been saved. Even you Kreskin. I say rest in peace dear little son. And though you may not have been nurtured and cared for during your short time on this earth, I say a prayer that you have peace now. You did matter, even though people like Sean don't think so.

Sean said...

I'm not a psychic, but I am a realist. It's not that hard to put two and two together anonymous. Let's see we have a 14 year old kid, with a rap sheet longer than most adults. He's been in and out of the judicial system as well as foster care. After all of this what does he do? Well i'll be damned, he goes out and steals another car. Yeah he's learning his leason all right. He's really trying to turn his life around. Even his friends said told him he would either end up in jail the rest of his life or end up dead. They knew he was a menace. He through his middle finger at everyone. He was selfish and didn't give a damn about the rules. He took what he wanted when he wanted. People need to start holding people accountable for their actions. Quavale had already chosen the path he wanted to continue down. He had a chance to change his life every time he got arrested or was place in foster care. He didn't. I already said he ddn't deserve to die, that Hill acted inappropriately, but that doesn't change the fact that Quavale is still a little punk. Open your eyes, yes it's unfortunate, no he didn't get what he deserved, yes he was young, but guess what, 14 year olds are having babies, 14 year olds are using drugs, 14 year olds are murdering others, 14 year olds are stealing cars. Age doesn't matter, behavior does. Anonymous if you think that Quavale was a beautiful human being then I'm sorry but you're dispicable, naive, in denial, and just a plain idiot.

Monica said...

Sean,you are clearly an ignorant person. The facts or allegations about the young mans "rap sheet" (as an aside who uses that language?) are irrelevant. The law rarely allows prior bad acts to enter into a court trial as to not prejudice the jury against the defendent. The same holds true here. None of us including you could predict the path that young Quavale would have chosen. None of us including Mr. Hall are judge, jury and executioner. how many of us are not selfish at 14?? It is not unusual for teeneagers to be selfish and self absorbed. I am a parent of five of them and I know of which I speak. Regardless of Quavale's bad behavior, he was a young man who was failed by the system, failed by his parents and his death along with the deaths of so many others signals a failure on the part of our society, which is further evidenced by the callous responses that his death and the circumstances of his death has generated. The law is not on the side of Mr. Hall. He was in no appreciable danger and therefore his use of deadly force was unwarrented and he should be punished accordingly.

Anonymous said...

All those in such a feeding frenzy saying this kid could not possibly have ever, under any circumstances been anything but a criminal are most likely the same ones that approve a slap on the wrist or a slap on the back for wealthy or famous criminals treated like unfortunate victims by the news media and that do much more harm than steal an old tin can. Hell, event he president, from his background of scamming people out of their land in Texas, and using illegal drugs looks like he'll mature into a thug. Ooops. I guess he did. But he's white and privileged so there's no such thing. White rich criminal? Can you say oxymoron Sean. Or just how about moron you asshole.

Sean said...

Monica, I'm not an idiot, but I am a realist. Oh by the way a person's criminal past is public record, so yes actually a person's criminal past is used in just about every single case. Why? Because it shows behavior. True Quavale is a juvenile, but since he is still a juvenile, every act he has committed as one can be used against him in court. Those record aren't sealed until he turns eighteen. True just about every single 14 year old kid is selfish and self absorbed, and may I compliment you on being a good mother. But your experience stops there. You more than likely a great mother that would do anything for there kids. Quavale's mom is a worthless person who has no reason being a parent. She didn't teach Quavale values, morals, or right and wrong, and as I have said in my two previous posts, Hill did act foolishly, Quavale did not deserve to die, and Hill should be punished for his stupid actions.

Now for anonymous. Somehow I knew someone would turn this into a white black race issue. Are you that stupid. If anybody is a criminal or a theif they should be punished accordingly regardless of race. Way to go off on a tangent there and attack the messenger instead of the message because you couldn't come up with a proper argument or comeback. Thanks for showing everyone who the racist is in this blog. I couldn't care less what kind of crime is committed. White color blue color who cares. I hate our juducial system right now. No body is held accountable for their actions anymore, criminals know they will be out as soon as the paperwork is filed. I hate Bush, I will concede that point to you. He is a thug, and a criminal, as are just about every other politician in this country. And they all should rot in a jail cell for the rest of their worthless lives. I'm sorry but the poinst you just tried to raise there for whatever reason are just plain wrong.

Monica said...

Sean, you are wrong on mnay fronts but certainly as it relates to prior bad acts in criminal trials. In the majority of cases those acts are not privy to juries. During the sentencing phase those acts can used but not before. Prior history may serve to unfairly prejudice the jury and for that reason is not allowed. In fact many appeals of have been won on that issue alone. Lastly, I did not call you an idiot(may have been a freudian slip by you) I said that you were ignorant, which you are.

FroneAmy said...

"it is difficult to hit a pedestrian with a car under any circumstances when the pedestrian sees the car coming" (Pickler, Oct 28)

Well I'd personally beg to differ on that one, I *did* see the car that was coming at me, and I did have right of way, but unfortunately I was unable to move out of the way, and was still hit by the car.

Anonymous said...

P.E.A.C.E says...

May you rest in peace little brother!
Your life was precious in the sight of God; you were made in his very image!
God loved you above all those who would abuse you!
He has you now, safe from all harm away from the corrupt racist judicial & foster systems.
You were sent as gift to the world and society threw you away! They didn’t like the wrapping that God sent you in; plus they think he delivered you to the wrong neighborhood.

May your death be a reminder to all of us of how little we value black life in our city!

Have mercy on our city God! Forgive them that are ignorant, open their minds and hearts to peace, unity and the sacredness of your precious gift of LIFE.

Peace to all my brothers and sisters. Keep on uniting and fighting for what’s right.

Anonymous said...

Everyone failed him? How about he failed himself...what did he expect the owner of the car he was stealing to do? Wish him well and ask him ot bring his car back washed with a full tank of gas?

I would have done the exact same thing.

Anonymous said...

iam so upset with what i see how dere u guys mislead my late best friend like that q needed help and was trying to get it q had rough times hard times more den what anybody on this damn page done went through so all u lame ass mu fuckas thats sayin yall wouldve did da same thing and he deserve it bring all that loud talk off tha internet ta tha hood i betta u wont make it out .... I BETTA we love u q and we understood tha problem only if we couldve helped keep ya head up kyle and marlin... asap

Anonymous said...

Honestly fuck all yal. The statement that his grandmother was making that yes he was wrong and he had no right! to do the things he did bt he was a life a greater value then any materialistic thing that can be replaced. He was astray from the right path and everyone can clearly see this be he was no menace to society.. He was simply a lost soul that needed seeking. I knew Quavale personally and he was a great! boy. He was full of life bt he was far from perfect just like everyone sitting on here blogging about. The convo that the mother and grandmother had on the Buzz was clearly from the frustration of losing a loved one. They feel why could have a chance at life to even change. It was a harsh way of death at such a young age despite the fact he had poor decisions.