Man convicted of LaPlace Feed & Supply killing sentenced to life in prison

Published 10:29 am Friday, May 31, 2019

EDGARD — A local man is facing a lifetime in prison five years after a visit to LaPlace Feed & Supply ended in robbery and the shooting death of storeowner Steve Finckbeiner.

Charles McQuarter III was sentenced to life in prison at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence for second degree murder, in addition to 99 years without benefits for armed robbery with a firearm.

Judge J. Sterling Snowdy ordered the sentences served concurrently during a Thursday afternoon court convening in Edgard.

McQuarter, 27, was convicted 11-1 of both charges March 28 at the conclusion of a four-day homicide trial that saw participation from numerous current and former members of the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Since the homicide occurred prior to Jan. 1, 2019, a new Louisiana law requiring a unanimous jury to convict did not apply.

McQuarter was represented by attorney Lisa Parker of the St. John the Baptist Parish Public Defender Office.

Steve Finckbeiner’s widow, Connie, suffered a gunshot to the face during the February 2014 attack. She took the stand twice during the trial and identified McQuarter as the gunman who killed her husband and left her bleeding on the floor.

Prosecuting attorney Lea Hall Jr. said a multiple offender bill enhanced sentencing on McQuarter’s armed robbery with a firearm conviction.

“The multiple offender bill increases the minimum penalty to one half of the longest penalty, and increases the maximum penalty to double,” Hall said.

Due to his prior offenses, McQuarter’s potential sentence for armed robbery ranged from 49.5 to 198 years imprisonment, as opposed to the 10- to 99-year imprisonment for first-time offenders.

“Because it was committed with a firearm, there was a 5-year enhancement,” Hall said. “That was included in the 99 years.”

A trial date has not come into focus for Dracier Dewey, who Connie Finckbeiner alleges was standing outside of the Feed Store when McQuarter shot her and killed her husband.

A status hearing for Dewey, represented by St. John Public Defender Shannon Batiste, is scheduled for 10 a.m. June 19 in LaPlace.