Location London Correctional Institution
Offenses Murder
Sentence Min/Max 18 YEARS/LIFE
Date Admitted 11/21/2002
Next Eligibility Hearing Date 01/30/2020
In March 2002, Rahshan “Noodles” Jones went to downtown Cincinnati with his cousin, Robbie Jones. While Robbie went to visit a friend, Rahshan went to a nearby grocery store. It was raining at the time, and a group of people were huddled near the grocery to avoid the rain.

Clarence “Rabbit” Nelson was one of those people. He saw Rahshan and followed him into the store. Nelson believed that Rahshan was a snitch and was heard telling Rahshan, “You think this shit is funny; you snitched on my partner; this shit ain’t funny.” Rahshan turned away from Nelson and started towards the cashier, which prompted Nelson to tackle him to the ground.

Store security then threw everyone but Rahshan out of the store. After checking to see if he was okay, the store asked Rahshan if he wanted to call the police. Rahshan made the fatal mistake of declining and, instead, leaving the store.

Once outside, Nelson attacked him again. Rahshan’s father, Levi Jones, owned a nearby barbershop and a person in the neighborhood who saw what was happening ran to get him. Levi arrived and quickly put Nelson in a bear hug. While struggling with Nelson, Levi heard three gunshots and turned just in time to see his son stumble and fall to the curb.

Robbie, who had got to the area just as all of this was taking place, saw McCurdy, who he knew only as Darius, step out of the gathered crowd and fire three shots before running from the scene. Notably, McCurdy was wearing a gray and red bubble coat.

As all this was taking place, Officer Robert Hess was less than a block away dealing with an unrelated matter when he heard the gunshots. Once he realized that he was not being fired upon, he ran around the corner to where he heard the gunshots come from. As he did so, he observed a man in a gray and red bubble coat fleeing from the area. Officer Hess did not take time to follow this person because he was focused on trying to provide aid to Rahshan. The shot that hit Rahshan, however, proved to be fatal.

Robbie told the police what he saw. Police verified Robbie’s identification of Darius via a photo array. A few hours later, at the urging of his family, McCurdy turned himself into the police.

At first, McCurdy claimed he had no knowledge of what happened and denied even being in the area. The police then informed him that multiple witnesses saw him at the scene.

After being confronted with this, he changed his story to claim that he was there, but he did not shoot a gun. After being confronted with the fact that multiple witnesses saw him shoot a gun, he once again changed his story.

In his third story, McCurdy claimed that Rahshan had unsuccessfully attempted to rob him. He said that there was a struggle between him and Rahshan. During this struggle, Levi jumped on his back, which caused his gun to accidentally discharge. Knowing that this was not at all what happened, the detectives told McCurdy they were done talking to him.

McCurdy then began to cry and said he was ready to tell the truth. He recounted how Rahshan and Nelson fought in the store and that this fight resumed outside. He confirmed that Levi showed up and intervened on Rahshan’s behalf. But he then told the police that, during the fight, Nelson handed him a gun and said, “Get these niggers off me.” McCurdy claimed that he then saw Rahshan advancing towards him with his hands in his pockets. McCurdy said that he knew Rahshan carried guns, so he pulled the gun he had been given and fired twice before running away. He told the police where they could find the gun.

Unfortunately for McCurdy, this self-defense story did not stand in the face of the multiple witnesses who saw what really took place. Those witnesses included Levi, who testified that there was simply no way that Nelson could have handed a gun to anyone during their struggle. In turn, the jury found McCurdy guilty as charged of murder, a firearm specification, and of having a weapon while under a disability (which was based upon a juvenile adjudication for trafficking drugs).

McCurdy was not involved in the fight between Rahshan and Nelson. He was merely a witness to that fistfight who had no reason whatsoever to fear for his safety. Likewise, he had no reason to pull out a firearm other than the purposeful killing of Rahshan.

McCurdy’s senseless murdering of Rahshan combined with his compounded lies about what “really” happened demonstrate that he has earned his life sentence. He should, therefore, be denied any type of early release.

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