Crime

Man accused of killing neighbor, claiming self-defense indicted on murder charge

A man accused of killing his neighbor in March has been indicted on a murder charge.

Mark Jabben, 46, told police that he killed 57-year-old Kevin Battle in self-defense on March 25 in the doorway of his side of their shared duplex in the 7600 block of John T. White Road. Police didn’t initially arrest Jabben and said that unspecified physical evidence supported his claims.

However, a grand jury that met this week handed up an indictment on a murder charge in the case, according to the district attorney’s office.

Tarrant County court records indicate Jabben is scheduled for a hearing on Sept. 12 on the murder charge.

As of 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jabben was not listed as being in jail.

Battle’s son, Kevin Battle II, told the Star-Telegram in the days after the shooting that the two men had been arguing because Jabben called Battle by a racial slur a week earlier. On the day of the shooting, Jabben made a similar comment to Battle’s 5-year-old grandson. When Battle tried to talk to Jabben about the remark, Jabben shot him, the family said.

Battle, the family said, was holding the hand of his grandson when the shooting occurred.

Police have said Battle wasn’t armed.

“The detectives found that the victim and the suspect had been arguing for over a week, and that on the date of the shooting Jabben made a comment to the victim’s grandson,” Officer Jimmy Pollozani said in an email to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in April. “Battle went to Jabben’s front door to confront Jabben about speaking to his grandson and a very brief argument ensued. Battle is believed to have attempted to enter into Jabben’s residence during the argument when Jabben fired three shots, striking Battle in the head.”

Then, on May 10, Jabben was accused of shooting his 56-year-old girlfriend in the shoulder. He was immediately arrested and booked into the Tarrant County Jail on a charge of aggravated assault against a family member with a weapon.

The woman told police that Jabben pointed a gun to her back. She later told a paramedic that Jabben hit her with the gun twice in the head before she was shot, according to an affidavit for his arrest.

.Jabben was released from jail on a $4,000 bond.

Ten days later, the mother of Jabben’s child told police that he went to her Carrollton home and threatened to shoot and kill her. His bond was revoked and Jabben was placed back in jail with a $50,000 bond, which he later posted.

The victim declined to press charges against Jabben in the Carrollton incident.

Jabben was also indicted on Thursday on a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in the shooting of his girlfriend.

After Battle was killed, activists from Fort Worth and Dallas protested the lack of an arrest and said they hoped to see him get indicted.

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Nichole Manna is an investigative reporter for the Star-Telegram. Before moving to Fort Worth in July 2018, she covered crime and breaking news in Tennessee, North Carolina, Nebraska and Kansas. She is a 2012 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and grew up in Florida.
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