VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — A man accused of killing three people in recent days — including his girlfriend, a man who was like a father figure to him, and his cousin — is speaking from jail.
In an interview with 10 On Your Side Thursday, Cola Beale IV, 30, gave insight into the days leading up to the homicides, as well as some of his personal history.
However, he did not issue any apologies.
Beale told 10 On Your Side he has a 3-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter. He recorded a message on his son’s tablet last week urging his son to make good choices in his life.
He said he has no remorse, but doesn’t want his 3-year-old son to end up like him.
“The electric chair would be the best thing for me,” Beale said.
Beale said he knew he had ruined his life after he “snapped” after an argument and killed his girlfriend, 31-year-old Czavi’er Hill, at her home in the Campus East section of Virginia Beach. He told us he threatened to kill her dog to which she pleaded with him to save the dog and hurt her instead. He said he fatally shot her on Tuesday, then lit the house on fire two days later.
Hill and a pet were both found dead by first responders. Beale says the dog died in the fire.
Police the following day, Friday, March 25, found 73-year-old Clifton Baxter dead from a gunshot wound on Linda Court in Virginia Beach. Family members have said Baxter was like a father figure to Beale.
Then, on Monday, Beale’s cousin Downing McLean was found dead from gunshot wounds to his head and back inside a Norfolk home. McLean’s sister said Beale was close with her brother.
“Each person had a different reason why I did it. It wasn’t like I just woke up and said ‘I’m going to kill my girlfriend,’” Beale told 10 On Your Side.
In the jailhouse interview Thursday, Beale said he isn’t of sound mind and keeps having flashbacks about what happened.
“All I see is red. All I see is fire. I don’t see no green I don’t see no colors,” he said.
On Thursday, 10 On Your Side also reported that Beale’s father, Cola Beale III, killed his wife in 2014. The father is in prison after being sentenced in 2015 to life with all but 40 years suspended for the murder of June Carlita Beale in their Gaithersburg, Maryland, home on July, 27, 2014.
Thirty-year-old Beale said he was close to his father’s wife, his stepmother. Beale was incarcerated when his father murdered his stepmother, and was devastated afterward. He said she was the only person who visited him in prison and wrote him letters.
In 2013, Beale pleaded guilty to robbery, conspiracy and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
“I was locked up at the time when he did it. She was writing me all the time. She wrote me a letter and at the end of the letter, she told me she knew she was about to go. She said she felt it. She felt like she wasn’t going to be here no longer. She felt like it was almost close to the end and that kind of hurt me because I was like damn, she’s the only one who wrote me when I was gone,” he said.
Beale is a registered sex offender. He pleaded guilty to sexual battery involving a minor in 2018.
While he was out on probation, Beale was caught driving while intoxicated on Naval Station Norfolk in 2019. He was found guilty on that federal charge.
Beale on Thursday said he hasn’t committed any crimes that law enforcement isn’t aware of.
Beale added that he tried not to follow in his father’s footsteps.
Moving forward, he wants his son to break the cycle.
“I just hope that he can break it. That’s why I didn’t give him my last name,” he said. “Continue to be strong. Pay attention. Be the best you can be.”