Fort Worth Woman Slain by Ex-boyfriend Was a Lovely Mother and Friend

Karen Finney’s family said she had a big heart and was always helping other people. Her ex-boyfriend shot and killed her in 2019.

“Karen was just that kind of person,” said Harmonie Soule, Finney’s sister, to the Star-Telegram. “She had it, she was willing to give and share, and she loved children.”

Soule said that at Finney’s funeral, a lot of people came up to talk about how she had helped them, like watching their kids or giving them money when they needed it. Soule said that Finney, who was 32, also liked taking care of her four children.

On January 18, 2019, Jarvis Franklin shot Finney several times in her home in east Fort Worth. On May 9, a judge in Fort Worth gave Franklin a life sentence.

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After Franklin pleaded guilty to murder, Assistant District Attorney Allenna Bangs said in closing statements at his sentencing hearing, “He will never walk the streets of this county or anywhere else.”

Soule says that Franklin and Finney went to high school together and went out for a short time while they were there. Years later, they found each other again and started seeing each other again. About a month into their relationship, Franklin started to hurt Finney physically and make threats.

Soule says that Finney told Franklin to leave her alone, but that he would show up at her place of work. Franklin’s mother also got involved. She begged Finney to let Franklin stay with her because he had nowhere else to go.

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Soule said that Finney’s family didn’t find out about the abuse and threats until a week before Franklin’s trial when Bangs told them. On Finney’s phone, investigators found threats from Franklin to Finney. He told her over and over that he would kill her, and she was scared.

Soule said that the family was taken aback.

“We didn’t know, and, you know, it makes you wonder why she didn’t tell us.” Soule said. “But if I know K, she was probably trying to keep us safe and thought she could handle it on her own.”

Soule said that Finney’s death was especially hard on her three children, who were at home when he was killed. Soule says that they still have bad dreams.

Because of COVID, Franklin’s hearing kept getting put off. Soule said it was hard to wait, and they’re glad Franklin got the sentence he did. However, that doesn’t make the family’s pain go away.

“It’s hard to celebrate, you know, because this is the end and Karen’s gone,” Soule said. “She cannot return.”

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