Port Arthur mother thinks Houston activist didn’t deliver justice for son

Published 4:35 pm Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Sandra LaDay, a Port Arthur resident and community activist, wanted some answers when her son, Kevin, died nearly a decade ago.

Kevin, 35, died on April 30 after struggling with Lumberton Police during his arrest. During the scuffle, Kevin was struck with a stun gun by the police and subsequently died.

After that, LaDay sought out Quanell X, a community activist with the New Black Panthers in Houston, to get justice for her son.

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Over the years, however, Sandra said she realized Quanell X took her money for her son’s case over false pretenses.

“He’s not an attorney. He’s an activist,” she said. “Someone referred him to me.

“He told me he needed $2,500 to look into it. I didn’t have that kind of money. He said I could instead send either a $50 or a $100 down payment and wire it to him.”

She said at one point she was tempted to pay him the $2,500. Instead she paid him $650 over time. She said Quanell X spoke at a rally in Lumberton eight years ago and didn’t do anything else.

He now works as a commentator at the Fox 26 station in Houston.

“It’s a shame all those people got swindled,” she said. “He’s used to resist the police, now he’s siding with them. Money talks.

“Any amount of money someone lost is a shame. If you don’t pay Quanell he has his bodyguards.”

As a result a peaceful rally, prayer vigil and press conference will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday at the Fox 26 station in Houston to demand Quanell X be taken off the air. They are also requesting the U.S. District Attorney’s office file charges against Quanell X for fraud, theft and embezzlement. It is expected that as many as 300 to 400 may be in attendance from across the region.

Those who have had contact with Quanell X are encouraged to attend.

“If you have had past interactions with Quanell X where he did not deliver on his promises after you paid for his services, now is your time to come forward and let your story be known,” Port Arthur activist and organizer Ricky Jason said. “Please be sure to bring any proof of your interactions. We want the world to know what kind of man he is and to demand that justice be served. Now is the time to do something about it and to not stay a victim.”

Jason said Mary Wiltz paid Quanell thousands of dollars and now wishes she could get her money back.

Jackie Toussant, a mother of five, said she gave Quanell her last money and didn’t get anything in return. Likewise, Tina Moore used her tuition money to pay for his services.

“All believe that Quanell X is a con artist and needs to be taken off the air and put in jail,” Jason said.

The 2009 30-to-40 page document from the Texas Rangers in reference to Kevin was forwarded to the Hardin County District Attorney’s Office in July 2009. A county-ordered autopsy report prepared by Justice of the Peace Vi McGinnis indicated Kevin’s death was accidental, and the result of PCP toxicity. The autopsy did not indicate evidence of police brutality.

Kevin’s family hired Milton Grimes, the attorney who represented Los Angeles resident Rodney King who was the victim of police brutality. Kevin’s family ordered a second autopsy conducted by a private lab. It was paid for by Sandra.

That autopsy stated Kevin died from brutal force to the head. It claimed he was hogtied and tased 17 times.

She added that the Lumberton Police officers were not indicted.

An indictment is not a final conviction of guilt; it is only a ruling by the grand jury that allows the district attorney’s office to proceed with a criminal case.

“Officers rarely get charged,” Sandra said.

A message to Quanell X was not returned.