Man accused of killing ex-wife with hatchet deemed competent for trial

Man accused of killing ex-wife with hatchet deemed competent for trial

ST. BERNARD PARISH, LA (WVUE) - A man accused of killing his ex-wife with a hatchet has pleaded not guilty to murder charges filed against him.

Mark Owens 56, was in court in St. Bernard Parish Tuesday for his arraignment.

Owens was indicted earlier this month for the first-degree murder of his wife Kimberly.

The judge deemed Owens competent to stand trial, and the St. Bernard Parish district attorney said they will not be seeking the death penalty.

Original reports: 

St. Bernard Deputy Chief John Doran said Mark may have been hiding under the house waiting for Kimberly to go to work the day of the attack.

He first tried to attack his ex-wife's mother who was also in the house at the time, but she was able to run to safety, according to Doran.

Doran said there had been an ongoing dispute between the couple and that the suspect was arrested in 2015 for a domestic incident.

The couple had one son.